BERIL – Grozny attacks

Grozny attacksRebel gunmen shot their way into the heavily fortified Chechen capital of Grozny last Thursday, leaving at least 20 people dead, including several policemen. According to Russian sources, nine militants died in the subsequent fighting.

Information from various sources about the event is contradictory. Chechen fighters, called Mujaheddin, rebels or terrorists depending on the source, claim that the policemen stopped them for an ID control and proceeded to shoot for no apparent reason.

Russian authorities and local pro-Russian Chechen authorities, however, claimed that the police had to intervene when the rebels began attacking a school and media headquarters. A number of Ukrainian deputies have expressed support for the rebelsand#39 actions, which has sparked anger in Moscow.

Regardless, the whole truth about this incident is only known to those who organized this assault. An investigation into the motives behind the attack is of utmost importance.

Firstly, the timing of the event is quite interesting. The attack came hours before Russian President Vladimir Putinand#39s annual address to the nation, which was probably not a coincidence.

As expected, Putin mentioned the attack during his address, saying he was confident security forces could deal with the threat of terrorismWhile delivering his speech, Putin was probably aware that the situation in Chechnya is only a pretext and that the real reason behind the attack is rooted in Russiaand#39s position towards Ukraine and Syria Chechen militants may, of course, want to show their disapproval for Russian policy towards Ukraine, or Putinand#39s support for Bashar al-Assadand#39s regime. Nonetheless, the militants will not be the only benefactors when Russia is pushed into a difficult position.

The European Union has imposed a number of harsh sanctions on Russia, and, as a response, Moscow has recently announced the cancellation of a pipeline project that would transport Russian natural gas to the EU. In brief, Russia and Europe are drifting apart with every passing day.

The US is probably quite satisfied with this as it prefers to negotiate with a relatively isolated Russia The West is urging Russia to step back a little, and in turn encouraging Russia to develop its relations with Turkey. In other words, Russia is being told to reach Europe, not through Eastern Europe, but through Southern Europe.

Should Russia accept this, it may continue to have some influence in SyriaThatand#39s why Turkey has a critical role to play in this bargain. Ankara offers a way out to Russia from the crisis, and it has the tools to convince Moscow.

In order to reach an agreement, however, Turkey and Russia will have to make some changes in their respective policies on SyriaDuring Putinand#39s visit to Ankara, the two countries signed a number of very important bilateral agreements. It is all the more unfortunate, therefore, that Turkey was mentioned in the bloody attacks in Grozny.

According to Chechen President Ramzan Kadyrov, the attack was planned by Akhmat Umarov, who is allegedly hiding in Turkey. In other words, Kadyrov has accused Turkey of being a safe haven for Russiaand#39s enemies at a time when Ankara is signing cooperative agreements with RussiaIgnoring the validity of this allegation, its purpose is still to stop the rapprochement between Russia and Turkey.

It is not clear whether the Chechens would like that, but there are probably third parties who are hoping that things go sour between the two countries.We shouldnand#39t only focus on particular incidents rather, we should look at these kinds of events from a certain distance.

The point is, a number of players are probably being manipulated by other, more powerful, players.

SOURCE: Today’s Zaman