The political situation in Chechnya is unlikely to change while it remains part of the Russian Federation, Colonel Abdul Khakim, the head of the Military Intelligence Department of the Chechen Republic of Ichkeria’s Armed Forces, told Kyiv Post.  

There has been much speculation recently about the potential outcomes in Chechnya given Ramzan Kadyrov’s rumored fatal illness, Khakim said in exclusive comments

However, even the death of Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov, according to Khakim, won’t become a game-changer.

Colonel Khakim, whose forces are allied with Ukraine and headquartered in Kyiv, said that in his view, Kadyrov is not an independent figure in the Russian political arena. For significant changes to take place in Chechnya, the entire system of Russian power needs to change, along with Putin.


“If one puppet is replaced by another, we shouldn’t expect much change. After all, everyone knows the rule that ‘changing the places of the terms does not change the sum,’” Khakim said.

Kadyrov, however, has long hoped to build a dynasty in Chechnya. His father Akhmat ruled before him, and today his 18-year-old eldest son, also named Akhmat, still lacks the credibility to lead the republic.

Khakim said he saw three potential scenarios for the development of the situation in the event of Kadyrov’s passing away.

The likely next potential leader of Chechnya after Kadyrov’s death is Magomed Daudov, nicknamed “Lord,” from Kadyrov’s entourage, who has long been waiting for his “finest hour,” Khakim said.

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Another scenario is also possible, in which the people will breathe a sigh of relief after the arbitrariness of Kadyrov and his entourage, and an outsider will be named to run Chechnya, Khakim added.

“They will appoint a protégé from Moscow, like in Dagestan, a kind of governor-general with Russian roots,” Khakim said. The change would not end the oppression of the Chechen people, but rather “just the obvious arbitrariness and crimes will be wrapped in the wrapper of law and order.”


Khakim offered a third scenario: Ramzan Kadyrov’s successor could be Apti Alaudinov, a descendant of “old KGB [State Security Committee of the USSR] officers” who made his career during Russia’s most recent large-scale aggression against Ukraine.

“He [Alaudinov] is well known to the Russian public for his ability to integrate with the Russian people. He speaks competently in pure Russian, unlike the uneducated Kadyrov,” he added.

Khakim said that if Apti Alaudinov did come to power, he would most likely try to purge Kadyrov’s entourage, and “dekulakize” them. Alaudinov’s next move would likely be to reformat the political system of Chechnya built by Kadyrov, and accuse Kadyrov of crimes against the people, Khakim said, thereby deflecting any public discontent away from the Russian leadership, and particularly President Putin.

Khakim said that no matter which of the three possible scenarios comes to pass, the overall situation in Chechnya is unlikely to change, and Chechnya will still remain one of the regions of Russia.


Regarding possible uprisings and unrest in Chechnya following the end of Kadyrov’s rule, Khakim said it is quite possible. Spontaneous unrest might occur because people, feeling the “wind of change” will intuitively begin to demonstrate disobedience and sabotage the authorities.

“After all, the spirit of freedom is alive and well in our people!” Khakim said.

Khakim added that he did not expect an organized uprising in Chechnya in the near future because there are no leaders there today who could prepare and raise the people in revolt against Moscow.

“The Russians have looked ahead into the future in Chechnya and cleared out all the underground cells. And it was done in the most despicable way – by the hands of Kadyrovites, who punished not only those who were against them but their relatives as well. Entire families suffered,” Khakim said.

Khakim said the main effect of Ramzan Kadyrov’s death would be great joy for the Chechen people.

“All Chechens, and not only Chechens, are tired of this character and his crazy antics and statements on the internet. So everyone will have very positive emotions,” he said.

Khakim said he planned someday to return to Chechnya but that “certain events” must take place before this can happen. Work on this is in full swing, he said.


“We are recreating the armed forces of Ichkeria (the Chechen word for Chechnya), which will be able to completely de-occupy our lands! In addition to the armed forces, it is necessary to recreate all the government institutions that will be able to take over the country’s governance in the shortest possible time.”

Khakim said that the economic development model of a future sovereign Ichkeria was very important. Its cornerstone should be the economic well-being of the people, as that would allow many Chechens living in other countries to return and work for the benefit of their homeland.

According to news reports, Chechnya’s strongman leader Kadyrov has incurable pancreatic necrosis. Kadyrov was diagnosed with this disease in January 2019, but it is only recently that the Chechen leader’s illness has become widely reported. Few doubt Kadyrov will recover, Khakim said.

Novaya Gazeta Europe reported on April 22 that since the spring of 2022, Kadyrov’s health has been deteriorating sharply. Reportedly, the disease has caused changes in Kadyrov’s behavior, although his entourage officially denies that he is ill.

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