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Chechen People's Call for Restoration of Truth and Peac

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29 October 2002

Chechen people's call for restoration of Truth and Peace

Today, our motherland lies devastated, persecuted mercilessly. Our brothers and sisters, mothers and fathers have been humiliated, tortured, raped and massacred. The land of our ancestors has been carpet-bombed, burnt, mined and poisoned.

Almost the entire population has been displaced in the misery of hunger and poverty. Towns and villages no longer exist. Chechnya has been reduced to a hellish landscape of ruins, ghettoes and concentration camps, where the only law is the law of the jungle.

We may endure this catastrophic devastation and tragic suffering as a national purification. However, we cannot accept that the world of the 21st century should simply stand by and silently ignore the destruction of our people. This would mean the world's denial of the principles fundamental to common humanity and its civilization.

We are aware of the reasons behind this silence and indifference. But we reject our destiny to be a sacrifice to post-Soviet power games. We reject the use of our nation as a flashpoint, invoked to spark a clash between civilizations. We deplore the international community for doing business as usual and abandoning the fundamental principles and values which it claims to protect.

Confronted with national annihilation, we, the people of Chechnya:

declare to the world that we sincerely seek to live in permanent peace with our neighbors and the whole of humanity;

affirm that the people of Chechnya, the Russian Federation and the international community have a collective responsibility to preserve our nation from annihilation and to immediately end the present military conflict.

In order to restore peace, we:

determine to bring a political solution by non-violent means, recognizing that the use of force cannot solve our problems and conflicts;

- deploring that the present military operation of the Russian Federation, whatever its purpose, in fact deprives the Chechen people of all fundamental human rights - demand international guarantees for the immediate restoration of fundamental human rights in Chechnya.

In order to overcome the vicious circle of mutual condemnation and mutual suspicion, we:

call for a common search for the path of healing, reconciliation and peaceful coexistence;

acknowledge past mistakes by Chechens, denouncing militarism and terrorism;

call on the Russian Federation to recognize the historical suffering endured by the Chechen nation: in the 19th-century Caucasian Wars, deportation by Stalin, and two post-Soviet Chechen conflicts;

call on the Russian Federation not to repeat these past evils of czarist Russia and the totalitarian Soviet Union;

call on Russian leaders to build a new and alternative statehood for the 21st Century, which renounces the mistakes of their predecessors, guarantees the rights of minorities, and restores the rights of indigenous peoples colonized during its totalitarian past.

We call on the international community to set up a special advisory commission under the auspices of the Secretary-General of the United Nations, with the objective of assisting the political process for healing, reconciliation and peaceful coexistence between the people of Chechnya and the Russian Federation.

We invite such a special commission to formulate an immediate action program for normalization and reconstruction, and to establish internationally supervised administrative organs in cooperation with representatives of the Russian Federation and the Chechen people, which will oversee:

" demilitarization, demobilization, the withdrawal of Russian Federation troops from Chechnya, and the establishment of legal and judicial authorities, including a domestic police force;

" the return of refugees, and logistical support to restore basic livelihood;

" the reconstruction of basic community infrastructure;

" the rehabilitation of ex-fighters with appropriate social assistance;

" education, social welfare, medical care and psychological rehabilitation for children and young people.

On the completion of this normalization and post-conflict reconstruction process, we will:

reaffirm the Chechen nation's right to self-determination under international supervision;

declare that the Chechen nation will never wish to be a threat to anyone;

envision that the Chechen territory becomes a permanent peaceful and demilitarized zone, as part of a comprehensive regional security mechanism forbidding any nation from taking military action against others.

In conclusion, we:

reaffirm our commitment to Peace and tasks for the restoration of peace, recognizing that the path to peace is the only way for our national salvation, and the protection of our honor and dignity;

pay a deep tribute to all martyrs and fallen civilian victims during the conflict;

solemnly declare our pledge to fulfill our commitments, so that future generations will never suffer the same tragic fate.

We, undersigned representatives of civil organisations unanimously support this declaration expresses its confidence in the Venerable Junsei Terasawa, and his associates, initiators of the International Inter-Religious Peacemaking Mission to Chechnya, as an intermediary with the international community and the authorities of the Russian Federation, in order to realize this declaration.

15 September 2001, Tbilissi

Chechen people's call for restoration of Truth and Peace

List of initiators and endorsers

1. International estaphet Peace March of Chechen refugees (Nazran-Strasbourg, August-September 2001), organizing committee:

Ruslan Kutaev, chairman

Zainap Gashaeva, cochairperson

Shirvani Gunaev, cochairperson

2. Union of Human Rights, Humanitarian and Non-Governmental Organizations (list of 33 NGOs)

3. Civil Interreginal Organization "Russian-Chechen Friendship Society Ruslan Kutaev, Ph.D., cochairman

4. World Congress of Chechen Diaspora and Refugees (Georgia, September 2001) Ruslan Akaev, cochairman of organizing committee

5. Chechen's branch of the Secular Confederation of Caucasus, Ruslan Akaev, leader

6. Secular Confederation of Caucasus Zaali Kasrelishvili, chairman

7. Committee of Soldiers Mothers of Chechen Republic Ichkeriya Malika Sadykova, chairperson

8. "Human Rights Defense" International Committee of Chechen Republic of Ichkeriya Aslambek Abdurzakov, chairman

Gilani Shovkhalov, first deputy chairman

9. Hunger strike of Chechen refugees (July-August 2001)

Abdrahmanova haisa, Tashkaeva Liza, initiators and participants

10. Hamid Gunaev, 4 years old, young political dissident

11. Chechnya National Salvation Committee, Ruslan Badalov, chairman

12. National Olympic Committee of Chechen Republic Ruslan Badalov, chairman

13. Vainakh regional branch of "Russian-Chechen Friendship Society" Imran Ezheev, chairman

14. "Echo of War" Interreginal Peace-making Organization Zainap Gashaeva, cochairperson of the

15. "Echo of War" Interreginal Peace-making Organization's Chechen branch Toita Yunusova, chairperson

16. North Caucasus Women's Union Fatima Gazieva, chairperson

17. World Congres of Vainakh Diaspora Chirvani Gunaev, vice-president

18. Progressive Force League of Chechen Republic, Abdulla Istamulov, chairman

19. Progressive Youth and Students Union Abdulla Istamulov, chairman

20. "Chechen Red Crescents" Civil Humanitarian Organization Khamzat Durdiev, director

21. Culture and Arts Workers Union Umar Yarychev, national poet, chairman

22. Science and Production Intellectual Center Prof. Said Debiev, doctor of technical science, executive director

23. "Fenix" Teachers Union of Chechen Republic Ramzan Didaev, chairman

24. Police Veterans Union Khizir-Mezhidov, lawyer, chairman

25. "Isak" Traditional Medicine Center Musa Azbiev, ashraf of Tibetan medicine, president

26. Chechen Regional Organization of "Afgan War Russian Union" Ibrahim Betemirzaev, chairman

27. "Sintar" Human Rights Organization Salambek Toshatamirov, chairman

28. Party of National Independence of Chechen Republic Mikhail Ezhiev, deputy chairman

29. "Solidarity" Informational Analytical Center Bauddi Dudaev, director

30. National-Patriotic Force Union Sultan Omarov, cochairman

31. Association on Culture and Old Times Monuments Protection Said Saratov, director

32. "Civil Protest" World Movement Ruslan Susaev, chairman

33. "Glasnost" Civil Foundation, "Glasnost-Caucasus" Information Center Kheda Saratova

34. "Nadezhda" Civil Organization Zara Abdulhadzhieva, chairperson

35. "Nana" Civil Organization Khedizhat, chairperson

36. Bee-masters Association of Chechen Republic Nadzhmuddhi Tepsaev

37. "Tzentaroi" Civic Counsel Abdul-Vahid Shuaipov, chairman

38. "Laman Az" Youth Organization Adlan Dinaev, leader

39. "Consolidation" Interregional Civic Movement to Defend Human Rights Sultan Tasuev, chairman

40. "Khaikham" Civic-political Organization Izruddin Aldamov, chairman

41. "Goryanka" Civic Movement Chavka Mukaeva

42. "Doctors of Chechen Republic for Humanizm" Civic Organization Aslanbek Alzanaliev

43. Peace March of Chechen Refugees

44. The Society of the Friends of the Chechen Republic, Jordan

Samil Beno, chairman

45. The Chechen Women Charitable Society, Jordan

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