News / Europe

    Analysts Concerned Over Impact of Closer US-Russia Anti-Terrorism Cooperation on Caucasus

    Closer US-Russia Anti-Terrorism Cooperation Could Hamper Democracy in North Caucasusi
    X
    May 03, 2013 8:28 PM
    Whether the Boston Marathon bombing suspects acted alone or were involved with extremist groups in the North Caucasus region of Russia, it has brought new attention to terrorism in that war-torn part of the world. VOA’s Brian Padden reports both the U.S. and Russia recognize the need to increase security and intelligence cooperation, but there is concern that the price of cooperation may be accepting Russia’s heavy-handed tactics and abuses.
    Brian Padden
    Whether the Boston Marathon bombing suspects acted alone or were involved with extremist groups in the North Caucasus region of Russia, it has brought new attention to terrorism in that war-torn part of the world. The U.S. and Russia recognize the need to increase security and intelligence cooperation, but there is concern that the price of cooperation may be accepting Russia’s heavy-handed tactics and abuses.

    In the 1990s, Russian security forces killed tens of thousands of Chechens and displaced hundreds of thousands more to end two separatist wars for independence, which Russia labeled terrorism. Both sides have been accused of committing serious human rights abuses, including the killing of civilians.

    Ali Tepsurkaev, a Chechen refugee now living in the U.S. says he and his brother, a journalist, were targeted by a Russian paramilitary group. 

    “My brother got [it] worse, I would say. He had a few bullets in the stomach, gunfire. And, as I said, we weren’t able to leave the village at night, especially, so he pretty much bleed [bled] out in my hands and died there,” he said.

    Chechnya has since stabilized under a dictatorship closely allied with Russia. But Andrew Kuchins, a Russia analyst with Center for Strategic and International Studies, says in part because of the brutal crackdown on dissent, opposition groups in that region have become more extremist. 

    “Many of the Chechens who initially were nationalists, some of them had become quite radicalized and identified themselves more as Islamists,” he said.

    In the last decade Chechen Islamist rebels took hundreds of Russians hostage, first in Moscow at a theater in 2002, and then in 2004 seizing a school full of children in the North Ossetia region. Russian security troops used deadly force to end these sieges, but many civilians were killed in the process. 

    Journalism professor Nicholas Daniloff, at Northeastern University in Boston, has been instrumental in helping Chechen dissidents find asylum in America.

    He says before it became known that the Boston Marathon bombing suspects Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev were ethnic Chechens, U.S. anti-terrorism cooperation with Russia had been tempered by concerns over human rights abuses and the suppression of legitimate opposition groups. Now, he worries that any independence movements in Chechnya and the North Caucasus will lose public support.

    “And what has happened now with the Tsarnaev brothers is that they have revived all those negative feelings about the Chechens, and it will be a very long time, I think, before the general population forgets or at least comes to understand better what the situation is,” said Daniloff.

    While the Boston bombings have highlighted the need for closer anti-terrorism cooperation between the U.S. and Russia, Daniloff hopes it will not come at the expense of support for democracy in the region.

    You May Like

    Hope Remains for Rio Olympic Games

    Facing a host of problems, Rio prepares for holding the games but experts say some risks, like Zika, may not be as grave as initially thought

    IS Use of Social Media to Recruit, Radicalize Still a Top Threat to US

    Despite military gains against IS in Iraq and Syria, their internet propaganda still commands an audience; US officials see 'the most complex challenge that the federal government and industry face'

    ‘Time Is Now’ to Save Africa’s Animals From Poachers, Activist Says

    During Zimbabwe visit, African Wildlife Foundation President Kaddu Sebunya says poaching hurts Africa as slave trade once did

    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: Anonymous
    May 04, 2013 10:44 PM
    Chechen had that independence for a few years after the first war with Moscow. It didn't serve them very well as they turned their country into muslim radical breeding ground, people's kidnappings became state business. And then they started a holy war to create great chechen pan islamic state which would include a bit of other republics of russian federation.
    Not a very good plan, was it?
    I think Chechen should be independent if they want, but how to achieve that without creating another taliban like goverment?
    In Response

    by: CHRIS from: us
    May 19, 2013 12:45 AM
    Chechnya has never been truly independent even in those three years of truce. It was a victim to Russian air blockade and Russian Secret Service meddling into Chechnya's internal affairs. Russia sponsored kidnapping and in many cases encouraged it in Chechnya through their agents in Chechnya, and by lavishly rewarding them with cash. The clandestine work of Russian Secret Service was directed at damaging the reputation of Chechens as noble and valiant freedom fighters. The reputation they earned in the first war by releasing hundreds of Russian POWs and treating them humanely. Russian secret service blew up their own apartment building in Moscow and other towns of Russia to blame Chechens and launch a new war. (watch on youtube: Assassination of Russia). The campaign to discredit Chechens has now been effectively moved to the US as I really doubt that Russians would let Tsarnaev in and out of Russia without messing with him, The people (Russian rogue wahabies) who might have brainwashed him in Dagestan to do what he did in Boston will be conveniently killed in a Russian operation. There is more than meets the eye in the Boston marathon bombing and I hope the US will not fall for KGB style tricks.

    by: Gennady from: Russia, Volga Region
    May 03, 2013 8:41 PM
    Professor Daniloff is absolutely right. With his direct involvement in two wars against freedom-loving people of Chechnya, his enchantment by J. Stalin (viewed by Chechens as a villain), Mr Putin will never be forgiven by Chechens and his collaborators. It would be detrimental for the USA’s image abroad to get involved in supporting heavy-handed tactics of rooting out democracy dreams of Chechen people at the expense of loosely defined antiterrorism fight. Motives of Tsarnayev brothers stay somewhat unclear as they may have been falsely associated with Chechen separatists.
    In Response

    by: serge from: london
    May 04, 2013 9:42 AM
    There are plenty of Caucasus time-ticking kamikaze in USA, it's up to USA to cooperate with Russians.

    Don't forget that Tsarnaev went to Russia to learn some tricks or Allah only knows what his business was there, but he could go anywhere in middle east for that purpose.

    But most revealing is, he did not bother any more with Chechnya and Russia, there is a new playground and that is USA.
    Good LUCK to the YANKS.
    Only TIME will reveal if it is true!

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Ivorian Chocolate Makers Promote Locally-made Chocolatei
    X
    July 29, 2016 4:02 PM
    Ivory Coast is the world's top producer of cocoa but hardly any of it is processed into chocolate there. Instead, the cocoa is sent abroad to chocolate makers in Europe and elsewhere. This is a general problem throughout Africa – massive exports of raw materials but few finished goods. As Emilie Iob reports from Abidjan, several Ivorian entrepreneurs are working to change that formula - 100 percent Ivorian chocolate bar at a time.
    Video

    Video Ivorian Chocolate Makers Promote Locally-made Chocolate

    Ivory Coast is the world's top producer of cocoa but hardly any of it is processed into chocolate there. Instead, the cocoa is sent abroad to chocolate makers in Europe and elsewhere. This is a general problem throughout Africa – massive exports of raw materials but few finished goods. As Emilie Iob reports from Abidjan, several Ivorian entrepreneurs are working to change that formula - 100 percent Ivorian chocolate bar at a time.
    Video

    Video Tesla Opens Battery-Producing Gigafactory

    Two years after starting to produce electric cars, U.S. car maker Tesla Motors has opened the first part of its huge battery manufacturing plant, which will eventually cover more than a square kilometer. Situated close to Reno, Nevada, the so-called Gigafactory will eventually produce more lithium-ion batteries than were made worldwide in 2013. VOA's George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Polio-affected Afghan Student Fulfilling Her Dreams in America

    Afghanistan is one of only two countries in the world where children still get infected by polio. The other is Pakistan. Mahbooba Akhtarzada who is from Afghanistan, was disabled by polio, but has managed to overcome the obstacles caused by this crippling disease. VOA's Zheela Nasari caught up with Akhtarzada and brings us this report narrated by Bronwyn Benito.
    Video

    Video Hillary Clinton Promises to Build a 'Better Tomorrow'

    Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton urged voters Thursday not to give in to the politics of fear. She vowed to unite the country and move it forward if elected in November. Clinton formally accepted the Democratic Party's nomination at its national convention in Philadelphia. VOA national correspondent Jim Malone has more.
    Video

    Video Trump Tones Down Praise for Russia

    Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump is toning down his compliments for Russia and Vladimir Putin as such rhetoric got him in trouble recently. After calling on Russia to find 30.000 missing emails from rival Hillary Clinton, Trump told reporters he doesn't know Putin and never called him a great leader, just one who's better than President Barack Obama. Putin has welcomed Trump's overtures, but, as Zlatica Hoke reports, ordinary Russians say they are not putting much faith in Trump.
    Video

    Video Uganda Unveils its First Solar-powered Bus

    A solar-powered bus described by its Ugandan makers as the first in Africa has made its public debut. Kiira Motors' electric bus, Kayoola, displayed recently at a stadium in Uganda's capital. From Kampala, Maurice Magorane filed this report narrated by Salem Solomon.
    Video

    Video Silicon Valley: More Than A Place, It's a Culture

    Silicon Valley is a technology powerhouse and a place that companies such as Google, Facebook and Apple call home. It is a region in northern California that stretches from San Francisco to San Jose. But, more than that, it's known for its startup culture. VOA's Elizabeth Lee went inside one company to find out what it's like to work in a startup.
    Video

    Video Immigrant Delegate Marvels at Democratic Process

    It’s been a bitter and divisive election season – but first time Indian-American delegate Dr. Shashi Gupta headed to the Democratic National Convention with a sense of hope. VOA’s Katherine Gypson followed this immigrant with the love of U.S. politics all the way to Philadelphia.
    Video

    Video Dutch Entrepreneurs Turn Rainwater Into Beer

    June has been recorded as one of the wettest months in more than a century in many parts of Europe. To a group of entrepreneurs in Amsterdam the rain came as a blessing, as they used the extra water to brew beer. Serginho Roosblad has more to the story.
    Video

    Video Commerce Thrives on US-Mexico Border

    At the Democratic Convention in Philadelphia this week, the party’s presumptive presidential nominee, Hillary Clinton, is expected to attack proposals made by her opponent, Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border. Last Friday, President Barack Obama hosted his Mexican counterpart, President Enrique Peña Nieto, to underscore the good relations between the two countries. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Tucson.
    Video

    Video Film Helps Save Ethiopian Children Thought to be Cursed

    'Omo Child' looks at effort of African man to stop killings of ‘mingi’ children
    Video

    Video London’s Financial Crown at Risk as Rivals Eye Brexit Opportunities

    By most measures, London rivals New York as the only true global financial center. But Britain’s vote to leave the European Union – so-called ‘Brexit’ – means the city could lose its right to sell services tariff-free across the bloc, risking its position as Europe’s financial headquarters. Already some banks have said they may shift operations to the mainland. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora