What will happen to the cells of ISIS in Russia?

According to some Russian resources from counter-terrorism bodies have a list that contains the names of 15 of thousands of Muslims from Russia, suspected of links with jihadist groups. These citizens are under the continuous control and are subject to periodic interrogations.

An assessment of the actual number of Muslims in the Russian Federation differ. According to the statistics of the Spiritual administration of Muslims of European part of Russia, the number of adherents of Islam in the country currently reaches 20 million people. While according to the survey conducted by “Levada Center” in 2013, Muslims make up 7% of the total population of Russia. However, the latest unofficial statistics show that the number of Muslims in Russia has reached 28 million people, representing 14% of the total population and makes it the largest Muslim country in Europe, except Turkey, and Moscow city with the largest number of Muslims in Europe after Istanbul. The number of Muslims in Moscow is about two million and there are only four mosques.

Perhaps the main reason for the hostility and distrust that Russians still feel towards Muslims is a long history of past conflicts between Muslims and Orthodox Christians for influence in the Eurasian region. This explains the periodic persecution of Muslims in the Soviet era, which saw the formation of the Turkestan autonomy in 1918 and of the Republic Ichkeria(Chechnya) in 1996.

Amid the rapidly growing influence of political Islam and jihadist movements in the middle East, Africa and Asia, the Kremlin realized that the emergence, formation and growth of Islamic movements in the republics of the Russian Federation poses a serious threat to security. And the first harbinger of this danger was the growth of separatist trends in some Russian regions.

According to some Russian resources from counter-terrorism bodies have a list that contains the names of 15 of thousands of Muslims from Russia, suspected of links with jihadist groups. These citizens are under the continuous control and are subject to periodic interrogations.

According to the Russian Prosecutor’s office, out of 650 cases of terrorism suspects to 150 were convicted. Was established for them the measure of restraint in the form of imprisonment on charges of belonging to a terrorist group in accordance with the 2013 law on the criminal liability of all those who belong to the foreign armed group poses a threat to Russia’s national security.

According to the Russian expert Alexei Malashenko of the Carnegie Center Roman Silantyev from the Ministry of justice of the Russian Federation, in Russia now there are thousands of Salafi groups, “Islam has penetrated all the Russian regions, including Siberia and the far East”. Scientists believe that the number of Salafists among the Russian is more than 700 thousand people. Despite the fact that most of them are not militants, the number of “sympathetic” LIH (banned in Russia — approx. ed.), radicals in Russia is estimated from 200 thousand to 500 thousand.

After the statement of the press Secretary of ISIL, Abu Muhammad Qadri in June 2015 on the establishment of a new Wilayah called “Vilayat of the Caucasus” a number of Islamic movements in Dagestan, Ingushetia, Chechnya, Kabardino-Balkaria and Karachay-Cherkess Republic swore allegiance to ISIS and its leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. Formed the phenomenon of “Caucasians-jihadists” that have spread across Syria and divided in accordance with their views in three directions. First United under the umbrella organization “Islamic state”. The second created groups that support “dzhebhat an-Nusra” — a branch of al-Qaeda in the Levant. Still others swore allegiance to independent from all the “Caucasus Emirate”.

According to various estimates, in the ranks of ISIS is from five to seven thousand Russian-speaking jihadists, making Russian the second language after Arabic in prevalence among members of the organization. In the service of ISIS is approximately 2400 existing Russian militants.

The newspaper “Vedomosti” published the statement of the Secretary-General of the Security Council of the Russian Federation Nikolay Patrushev at session of National antiterrorist Committee that “at the end of 2014, Russia has left about 2,900 people to participate in the fighting in the middle East.” The Minister of foreign Affairs Sergey Lavrov, in turn, in a statement, “ITAR-TASS” reported that “their number may reach five thousand fighters “. Finally, according to a report by The Soufan Group, “the number of militants from the former Soviet republics in ISIS 2015 reached 4700 people, 2,400 of whom were immigrants from Russia’s North Caucasus.”


© RIA Novosti news Agency, said tsarnayev | go to fotoangelo “Heart of Chechnya” named after Akhmad Kadyrov in Grozny

Reuters published a report on this topic called “How Russia has allowed extremists to move to Syria to fight for ISIL”. However, the Russian side denies its involvement in the program, the purpose of which was to help the Russian Islamists to leave the country at any time. In response to these accusations from the West, Russia has placed on Western countries responsible for the infiltration of terrorists in Syria and Iraq. Press Secretary of the President of Russia Dmitry Peskov said that “the Russian authorities do not cooperate or do not have anything to do with terrorists,” and also recalled that in a statement, the Russian foreign Ministry stated that “the elimination of terrorists is going on inside the Russian territory.” At the same time, the mufti of the Chechen Republic Salah Mezhiev said that those who return to Chechnya, was sorry for her adherence to ISIS or the terrorist groups in Syria, will have the possibility of a pardon and will be able to lead a normal life.