by Kateryna Mishchenko

In the North Caucasus Republic of Ingushetia, which is part of the Russian Federation, a group of six local insurgents clashed with a unit of the Russian Federal Security Service (FSB). At 7:30 pm (local time), a Counter-Terrorism Operation (CTO) regime was introduced in the city. Locals were forbidden to go out on the streets. Russian authorities also immediately began intimidating the population, threatening them with criminal liability for spreading “knowingly false information” about the incident.

Thus, on the evening of Saturday, March 2, Russian forces attempted to apprehend insurgents in an apartment building in the city of Karabulak. In response, they opened fire. The battle lasted almost 16 hours. There is little information about the incident as the Kremlin carefully conceals the details of what happened. Information about what happened became known from frightened residents of Karabulak who wrote on the Internet about explosions and gunfire. The security forces conducted indiscriminate shelling of residential buildings in the area of ​​the confrontation, using small arms and heavy weapons, including grenade launchers. As a result, even nearby buildings came under fire.

The Russian authorities assured that the residents of the surrounding buildings were evacuated. However, local social media reported hospitalization of civilians with gunshot wounds. Only around noon on Sunday, March 3, the shooting subsided. The Russian authorities reported the liquidation of all six insurgents. None of them laid down their arms or surrendered. There is no information about losses among the security forces. Social media reports that the group led by Amirhan Gurazhev fought with FSB special forces. Last year, they managed to carry out several successful attacks on Russian security forces, including on a traffic police checkpoint.

Representative of the Ingush Independence Committee Magomed Toriyev said: “In Ingushetia, resistance has not stopped for a single day for 200 years – since Russia occupied the country. The struggle continues today in one form or another and will continue in the future: in Ingushetia, in Dagestan, in Bashkiria, and throughout the North Caucasus.” According to him, due to Russian aggression, more and more peoples under the occupation of the Russian Federation are trying to leave its composition. Specifically mentioned is the Eurasian Solidarity Alliance, a coalition comprising various peoples including the Ingush, Kalmyks, Buryats, and Yakuts. “They act together, seeking independence from Russia and the creation of normal states that will not threaten or attack anyone,” Toriyev said.

It’s important to note that Karabulak is located in a potentially explosive region. Not far from this city is Grozny, where both Chechen wars took place, and Beslan, where the school hostage crisis occurred in 2004. Overall, the Caucasus is the territory that Russia has constantly conquered.

On the cover photo, view of Magas, the capital of the Republic of Ingushetia, from Tower of Concord ©Oleg Golovnev/