Person of the Week: Elena Milashina

Week-ending 17 April 2020

Chechen Leader Threatens Journalist Who Investigated Region’s Harsh Virus Quarantine

Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov has threatened an investigative journalist Monday for a “provocative” story on the Russian region’s strict anti-coronavirus measures, the independent Novaya Gazeta newspaper reported. The story, authored by Novaya Gazeta journalist Yelena Milashina, cited quarantined Chechens as saying Sunday that they stopped reporting coronavirus symptoms for fear of being labeled “terrorists.” Kadyrov reportedly accused “that woman, if you can call her that,” of writing “nonsense.” The Moscow Times, 14 April 2020

Officials order ‘Novaya Gazeta’ to delete article on COVID-19 in Chechnya following Kadyrov’s threats to have the author attacked

The major Russian investigative newspaper Novaya Gazeta has deleted an article that described a chaotic and harsh COVID-19 response in Chechnya. An archived version of the article can still be found in Russian here. The newspaper complied with an order from the national media and censorship agency Roskomnadzor to have the article removed within 24 hours. Meduza, 15 April 2020

Chechen leader threatens journalist Elena Milashina over COVID-19 reporting

Vilnius, Lithuania, April 15, 2020 — Russian authorities should condemn Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov’s threats to journalist Elena Milashina and ensure her safety, the Committee to Protect Journalists said today. In an April 13 speech, Kadyrov accused Milashinaa correspondent for independent newspaper Novaya Gazeta, of writing “nonsense” and blamed the Federal Security Service for not silencing her, according to a transcript of his remarks published by Novaya Gazeta. CPJ, 15 April 2020

Russia’s Novaya Gazeta Deletes Chechnya Lockdown Article After Kadyrov Threat

The independent Novaya Gazeta newspaper has deleted its investigation into the republic of Chechnya’s strict anti-coronavirus measures after Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov issued a threat to the journalist who wrote it. The Moscow Times, 16 April 2020

‘Nothing unusual here’ The Kremlin dismisses Ramzan Kadyrov’s latest threats against independent journalists

Earlier this week, Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov lashed out at a report by Novaya Gazeta about the republic’s struggles to curb the spread of coronavirus. On Instagram and then Telegram, Kadyrov accused the FSB of “aiding and abetting” the newspaper and demanded that the intelligence community “stop these monsters,” adding, “If you want us to commit a crime and become criminals, just say so! One [of us] will take on this responsibility and serve his time, as required by law. He’ll do his time and then he’ll be released!” On Thursday, April 16, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov finally weighed in on the conflict. Meduza, 16 April 2020

Waiting on Chechnya’s justice system ‘Novaya Gazeta’ chief editor Dmitry Muratov responds to Ramzan Kadyrov’s latest threats

On April 13, during a live stream on Instagram and then later on his Telegram channel, Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov condemned a recent report written by Novaya Gazeta journalist Elena Milashina about the spread of coronavirus inside the Chechen Republic. Meduza, 16 April 2020


On 13 April, Chechnya’s Head Ramzan Kadyrov posted a video on Instagram in which he issued a death threat aimed at Russian journalist Elena Milashina. The threat followed the publication of her article about the spread of COVID-19 in Chechnya. She is in grave danger and Russian authorities must take urgent steps to ensure her safety. Amnesty International, 17 April 2020

Russia censors Novaya Gazeta at Chechen leader’s behest

Reporters Without Borders (RSF) condemns the Russian media control agency Roskomnadzor’s “unacceptable” censorship of an article in the leading Moscow investigative newspaper Novaya Gazeta about Chechnya’s chaotic and authoritarian management of the coronavirus crisis. It seems that the Russian authorities will stop at nothing to support Ramzan Kadyrov, who has ruled the autonomous southwestern republic of Chechnya with an iron hand for years and is on RSF’s list of Predators of Press FreedomRSF, 17 April 2020

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