Chechen Women in Mortal Fear as President Backs Islamic Honor Killings

Diana Markosian, Washington Times, April 29, 2012

Chechnya’s government is openly approving of families that kill female relatives who violate their sense of honor, as this Russian republic embraces a fundamentalist interpretation of Islam after decades of religious suppression under Soviet rule.

In the past five years, the bodies of dozens of young Chechen women have been found dumped in woods, abandoned in alleys and left along roads in the capital, Grozny, and neighboring villages.

Chechen President Ramzan Kadyrov publicly announced that the dead women had “loose morals” and were rightfully shot by male relatives. He went on to describe women as the property of their husbands, and said their main role is to bear children.

“If a woman runs around and if a man runs around with her, both of them should be killed,” said Mr. Kadyrov, who often has stated his goal of making Chechnya “more Islamic than the Islamists.”

In today’s Chechnya, alcohol is all but banned, Islamic dress codes are enforced and polygamous marriages are supported by the government.

Some observers say Mr. Kadyrov‘s attempt to impose Islamic law violates the Russian Constitution, which guarantees equal rights for women and a separation of church and state.


“You hear about these cases almost every day,” said a local human rights defender, who asked that her name not be used out of fear for her safety. “It is hard for me to investigate this topic, yet I worked on it with [human rights activist] Natasha [Estemirova] for a while. But, I can’t anymore. I am too scared now. I’ve almost given up, really.”

Estemirova, who angered Chechen authorities with reports of torture, abductions and extrajudicial killings, was found in the woods in 2009 in the neighboring region of Ingushetia with gunshot wounds to the head and chest. Her killer or killers have not been found.


To escape the strict mores, some of the young opt for early marriage, which they view as the gateway to independence, sexual activity and societal respect. That goes for young Chechen men, also.

Abu-Khadzh Idrisov, 20, married in his teens to simply experiment, he said. His first marriage at age 14 lasted barely a year. He married a second time at 18. He spotted his future wife at a park in Grozny and, with the help of his friends, kidnapped her.

“When I married her, I honestly knew only two things: her name and the school she studied at. We talked together once,” he recalled. “But we have traditions and extremely strict rules in Chechnya, and you can’t just ignore them. I carry my family’s name, and if I tarnish it, I will have problems.”

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  • loyalwhitebriton

    How can white people in eastern Europe and the Russian caucus believe in Islam?
    Islam is a death cult; whether it is suicide bombing, honour killings, or making love to ones dead wife. It’s just death, death, death,, whichever way you look at it.
    So how can the aforementioned white people believe in such a cult?

    • IstvanIN

      Coming to a Kingdom near YOU!

    • 100s of years ago they were conquered by the Ottoman Turks and forced to convert under pain of death.  Many didn’t and were beheaded.  Islam is a ruthless culture based on the Koran.  

  • anarchyst

    islam (purposely uncapitalized) is NOT a “religion, but a political system masquerading as a religion.  That being said, it should be easy to ban or prohibit “the free exercise” of islam . . . at the least all muslims should be required to register as “agents of a foreign government” with the US State department . . . the same should be required of ALL “dual national” citizens of the US . . .

  • Rocky Bass

    I just can’t take listening to all you SICK ISLAMOPHOBES, I mean really!

    Yep I  will seek treatment for my Islamophobia just as soon as they get treated for their Bombophilia.

  • Xanthippe2

    Does anyone think this sort of article is designed to keep Muslims out of the West?  The purpose is the opposite: the writer would like these young women to immigrate here so that they can be “free.”

    Sorry, they should stay there and work on changing THEIR societies if those societies don’t foster their interests; they should not come here and change our society.

  • xthred

    Gotta hand it to the Chechens. It ain’t easy to devise a shittier form of government than the Soviet Union.