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Kadyrov Accused of Intimidation

Published: September 9, 2003 (Issue # 900)


MOSCOW - A candidate in Chechnya's presidential election accused the Moscow-appointed Chechen administration of acting president Akhmad Kadyrov of using intimidation and violence against others on the ballot.

"There are certain bureaucrats who are putting pressure on some candidates to leave the pre-election process, and thereby clear the path for acting president Akhmad Kadyrov," Malik Saidullayev said at a news conference Monday.

The millionaire businessman said the Chechen police force, headed by Kadyrov's son Ramzan, had committed "mass violations," using intimidation, force and weapons against representatives of his father's opponents in the election race.

Saidullayev said one of his own assistants was kidnapped and tortured for four days by Ramzan Kadyrov's men and said he too had been "ambushed" by an armed crowd of Kadyrov supporters when he was recently in Chechnya.

The Kremlin has not publicly backed any of the 10 candidates in the race.

Independent polls have shown Saidullayev and Aslanbek Aslakhanov, who represents Chechnya in the State Duma, leading the race, their popularity far surpassing that of Kadyrov.

One candidate has already pulled out of the Oct. 5 elections and Aslakhanov recently threatened to withdraw his candidacy if the authorities "fail to create conditions for holding democratic elections."

Saidullayev, however, said he did not intend to withdraw his candidacy, saying it would be a "betrayal" of his supporters.

"Even if these elections are only 30 percent fair, I think I will still beat Kadyrov," he said, warning that if any more candidates withdraw, the elections would be compromised.

The chairperson of Chechnya's election commission, however, denied reports that the election race was fraught by unrest.

"Whatever Chechnya specialists say about passions running high, the exchange of insults and negative reporting in the election race, is untrue," Abdulkerim Arsakhanov was quoted by Interfax as saying.

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ALL ABOUT TOWN

Friday, Dec. 19


Test your mastery of parlor games during Game Evening at the British Book Center. Learn how to play a variety of classic, mentally challenging games and use your newly acquired skills to crush weaker opponents. The event beings at 5 p.m.



Saturday, Dec. 20


The city’s Babushkina Park on Prospekt Obukhovskoy Oborony will be invaded by dozens of rocking-and-rolling Santa Clauses during today’s Santa Claus Parade. Not only will they parade through the park but there will also be competitions amongst the festively-clad participants and a musical master class. There will also be a prize for the best-dressed Santa Claus.


Stock up your record collection during the Vinyl Christmas Sale at the KL10TCH bar on Konyushennaya ploschad today. Spend the afternoon perusing the records for sale while listening the classic, clean sound of records spinning out hits from a variety of musical genres and time periods.



Sunday, Dec. 21


The Zenit St. Petersburg basketball team returns to the northern capital this evening for a matchup with Krasny Oktyabr, a Volgograd-based basketball club. Tickets for the game, which tips off at 6 p.m. this evening, can be purchased on the club’s website or at their arena, Sibur Arena, on Krestovsky island.


Satisfy your sugar cravings during Sweet New Year, an ongoing seasonal festival at the Raduga shopping center. Each weekend of December will welcome hungry visitors to taste hundreds of different kinds of desserts made from a plethora of sweet treats. Workshops are open to visitors and seasonal gifts can also be purchased for those rushing to finish their New Year shopping.



Monday, Dec. 22


Pick out the latest fashions as holiday gifts for loved ones or as early presents for yourself during the Christmas Design Sale at Kraft on Obvodny Kanal, starting on Dec. 20 and continuing through Dec. 27. Designer clothes will be on sale every day of the week or you can buy something more festive to decorate the home while sipping on hot coffee and perusing the various master classes.



Tuesday, Dec. 23


Meet Arctic explorers Fedor Konukhov and Viktor Simonov during SPIBA’s and Capital Legal Service’s event “Arctic Expedition” this morning in the Mertens House business center at 21 Nevsky Prospekt. The meeting will discuss the explorers’ ongoing eco-social project and how companies can use the project as a unique marketing opportunity. Email office@spiba.ru by Dec. 22 if you wish to attend.



Wednesday, Dec. 24


The Anglican Church of St. Petersburg we will be holding a Christmas Eve service at 7 p.m. led by Rev Wm. Shepley Curtis of the Episcopal Church. The service will be held at the Swedish Church at 1/3 Malaya Konyushennaya Ulitsa.



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