Russia-Turkey: Chechen war memory clash

Brussels 22.12.2021 Kremlin has conveyed its disapproval to Ankara via diplomatic channels over an attributing a name of Dzhokhar Dudayev, the leader of Chechen separatists, to one of the city parks, the spokesperson Dmitry Peskov told journalists on Wednesday, December 22. (Image: Caucasus, illustration)

“We have already notified our Turkish colleagues via diplomatic channels that we, to put it mildly, do not approve of such names in Turkish cities,” he said.

The Kremlin official also said that the reaction of Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov to this event was quite understandable. “This is a very emotional yet understandable reaction of the head of a Russian region who suvived several wars, several wars that were provoked, started by terrorists who attempted to take control over that Russian region,” he said. Putin’s press secretary reiterated that “one of the terrorists who did it was at some point their leader Dudayev.”

“Recently, unfortunately, in one of Turkey’s regions one of the parks was named after this terrorist. Of course, this is a very painful decision for all Chechens, for the Republic of Chechnya within the Russian Federation,” the spokesman asserted. Therefore, in his opinion “such an emotional reaction is quite understandable.”

On December 21, Kadyrov addressed the Russian Foreign Ministry asking to respond to the actions of Turkish authorities. The Chechen leader also urged Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to determine whether he supports “transparent and honest relations with the Russian Federation.” According to the Chechen leader, the current actions by the Turkish authorities are a direct threat to Turkish-Russian relations, they should be noticed and preventive diplomatic measures should be taken.

Earlier, media outlets reported that a park was opened in Korfez, a town in Turkey’s north-west, named after Dudayev, the president of the self-proclaimed Chechen Republic of Ichkeria who led an armed resistance after federal troops were deployed to the region in 1994. He was neutralised in a special operation in 1996.

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