”Kadyrov put his foot in the front to make me lick it and ask for mercy”

81_1.jpgOn photo: One of former hostages who survived by a miracle in Kadyrov’s personal prison in Hosi-Yurt


Islamic preacher Muhamadsalah Masayev told in his interview to New Gazette (“Novaya Gazeta”) about how he ended up in Kadyrov’s torture chambers after his sermon in one of the mosques in the city of Gudermes, Ichkeria. In spite of any possible retaliation, he stated that he would like everybody to know about the fate of those who are not pleasing to the ringleader of Chechen pro-Russian apostates (whom we call murtadin) or to Kadyrov’s “religious leaders”.


“Just tell about what happened to me, and don’t tell about my companions. It’s me to have made this choice, and I don’t want to get them endangered”, he said in his interview to the Russian periodical.


“I’m a preacher. I teach people to respect the law and authority, to keep peace and believe in the One God. I’m 42 and I was born in the Chechen settlement of Itum-Kale bordering with Georgia. I had my two-year service in the Army. Then I studied one year at the Moscow Road Institute. And then I decided to dedicate my life to religious service.  


On 27 September I and two my friends, we came to Gudermes. We spent a few hours in a local mosque: I prayed and preached the good to the Muslims. However, a local mufti, a guy of 10 years younger than me, took my speech aggressively. Then we went to the Central City mosque and introduced ourselves to the mufti. He smiled during the meeting…but the night of 27/28 September we spent in a local “police station”.


We had been detained right in the mosque. In the police station one of the officers hit me “professionally” on my ear and then he began to tear my beard and shouted that if I don’t wear moustache and wear only beard, that means I am a Wahhabite. He also checked if I wore boxers. I’m no Wahhabite, I’m a preacher. 


… we were released on the morning 28 September. Two days later, people in camouflage stopped us again on our way to the mosque and they told us we had to accept invitation by the Chechen mufti Sultan Mirzayev. We could not resist it. So we went on that “visit” being accompanied with armed people.


We passed a lot of roadblocks, but our motorcade was never stopped. On the contrary, the guards greeted the camouflaged people accompanying us. Then we passed a big gates looking like that built in Moscow in commemoration of the Victory at the war of 1812. On one side of the gates there was a bas-relief of an animal looking like a wolf, while on the opposite side there was a bas-relief seeming like a lion. In the middle, there was a portrait of Putin. We were told to leave the car and pass into a bus in which they told us they would take us to the mufti.


For the next month that bus became to be our prison. We had to make water into a plastic bottle, and once a night we were allowed to go to stool. If you can’t keep it up till night, no problem, any corner of the bus was yours. It was very cold at night. There we stayed more than a month. We were not even told why we were kept hostages, they only humiliated us. Once, they took us to the forest and pretended to be going to shoot us. Then they laughed and took us back.


One day, … the commander of some regiment came to see us. He bashed me and shouted at me some humiliating words. Some day the guards took us to show to Ramzan Kadyrov. Kadyrov extended his foot, as if he wanted us to lick it and to ask for mercy.    


When it became too cold, we were passed to a local prison. In the cells next to ours there were people too. Once Ramzan Kadyrov called one of them with his nickname Maly (Shorty).


Shorty was a guy of about 30. He was tall and thin. That way we learnt that the faulty followers of Ramzan Kadyrov were kept in that prison too.


Did I see representatives of the Russian special services on that base? Yes, I did.


My pals, one of whom comes from a very influential stock, were searched for by their relatives. Kadyrov swore to them that the guys were not in his prison. But the relatives managed to get the truth somehow. So they had to let my friends go. It was in December 2006.


And I was told “it’s too early for you to get at large”. Kadyrov added as if mocking at me “Stay here for more and teach my people to preach”.


The last month of staying there I was allowed to move around the base freely and I slept in the general barrack. That’s how I learnt that was a territory of some cantonment.   


Ramzan Kadyrov let me go 21 January 2007. That day he invited me to have some tea with him, at his home. I asked who had arranged my kidnapping to his place. He said that was done by order of the Chechen Mufti Sultan Mirzayev. When letting me go, he said something meaning that from now on he would be my best friend.




As for Chechen Mufti, one may add one document to his portrait:


…I resolve: To appoint Mirzaev Sultan to be the chair of the Supreme Sharia Court of the Chechen Republic of Ichkeria, releasing him from the position of Imam in the National Guard…” That document was signed by Maskhadov.”


Department of Monitoring,

Kavkaz Center

Check Also

Nagorny Karabakh’s Uncertain Future

With thousands fleeing Nagorny Karabakh after Azerbaijan’s lightning victory ended 30 years of de facto …