The Chechens must be allowed a decent burial for their President Aslan Maskhadov sign now

The Chechens must be allowed a decent burial for their President Aslan Maskhadov

Nothing, nothing at all will ever justify the Russian officials refusal to return the body of Aslan Maskadov to his family, the only president to have ever been elected democratically. Denying this right to the Chechen people today is both totally spiteful and irresponsible.

Undignified of a nation claiming to be a state of law, denying to a family, a nation, the most sacred of duties, - that of honouring his deaths -, and which, by displaying the most profound disrespect for the Chechen customs, as well as Muslim customs, - a deceased person must be buried the same day before sun dawn, in his village, - wilfully humiliates.Respect for the wise men is fundamental to the collective identity of the Chechnya nation, and the possibility to pray at the tomb of a deceased is an elementary requirement to keeps ones dignity. This is one of the reasons why so many people stayed in Chechnya, despite heavy bombardments and shootings during all those years of war, in order to die on their land : Rather than crawling on my knees, said an old woman in Grozny in 2000, I prefer to die standing up." Today, it is about a country leader who always refused to flee his country, because he preferred to stay amongst his people rather than abandon them, whose body is abducted. As he was saying : When Chechens are abducted, it is their whole families that are abducted.
It is to his family, to the entire Chechnya nation that this ultimate insult is made.

This refusal is evenly deeply irresponsible: terrorism that Russia pretends to combat by eliminating Maskhadov, can only be exacerbated by this death as well as by refusing to return the body. Let us not forget that such humiliations to innocent victims have, in certain cases provoked deplored action by kamikaze-women, and fed spiralling revenge and hatred, while during 10 years, the dead have not been buried in their villages in Chechnya and so many corpses have not been able to be identified from fragments left after tortures and bombings.

The Russian authorities, without any valid reason, are committing a double murder. Moral and political. In a society that lives its rituals as survival symbols, that lives its customary and community rules as a guarantee of its collective memory when everything has been destroyed and that one quarter of the population has been exterminated, to poke the iron in the wounds by refusing to return the body of a personality who represented a whole nation, is pure provocation. Kafka wrote : The absolute seduction of evil, is provocation in combat . By referring to an anti-terrorist law, which on top of that does not even apply to A. Maskhadov, who never ceased to condemn any form of terrorism and has never been condemned for acts of terrorism, M. Poutine enforces the renewal of the conflict in a historical furtherance where Chechens see not only their country insulted but their honour savaged. And he recalls a three centuries old fact : Sheikh Mansour, the Chechen religious leader who instigated opposition to the Russian colonisation between 1785 and 1791, got terminated in 1794, in an anonymous ground hole at the Schliesselburg fortress, near St-Petersburg. Without tombstone, without name.

By refusing to return the body, the Russian authorities choose to exacerbate to the extreme the feeling of injustice and despair. By displaying their sarcastic and open disdain, they choose to revive revolt and revenge. Not asking Vladimir Poutine to return Aslan Maskadhovs body to his people, is an additional step of Europes guilty inaction of facing the Chechen conflict. When it will be too late, it will really be too late.

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Clinton AndersonBy:
HealthIn:
Petition target:
EU presidency

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