Recognize The Chechen Republic of Ichkeria in order to prevent further acts of Genocide against the Chechen People by The Russian Federation!

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(The author served as Legal Adviser to the Palestinian Delegation to the Middle East peace Negotiations from 1991 to 1993. He is the Attorney of Record for the Chechen Republic of Ichkeria (ChRI). The viewpoints expressed here are his own.)

On December 13,  2001, Russian President Vladimir Putin conducted a public news conference with the Financial Times of London that was published by them on 15 December 2001. During the course of this interview, President Putin admitted and conceded yet again that the Russian Federation had officially recognized both the de jure and the de facto independence of the Chechen Republic of Ichkeria. To quote President Putin’s exact words:

FT: For the war on terrorism, do you expect more support from the international coalition in Chechnya?

Mr. Putin: We believe that this would be well grounded, and fair. And we should state honestly what has been happening there all this time, what is happening there now.

In 1996 Russia withdrew all its military and law enforcement forces from the territory of Chechnya. Thus de facto, if not de jure, we granted independence to Chechnya. So nobody can accuse us of suppressing the desire of the Chechen people for independence. Once already we have given them such an opportunity….

The Russian Federation is bound by President Putin’s latest Admission Against Interest.

President Putin, President Yeltsin and the Russian Federation have repeatedly recognized both the de jure and the de facto independence of the Chechen Republic of Ichkeria. The other governments of the world must do no less. The world’s governments must take President Putin, President Yeltsin and the Russian Federation at their word, as well as respect what President Putin, President Yeltsin and the Russian Federation have repeatedly done, admitted, and conceded: The Russian Federation has already recognized the Chechen Republic of Ichkeria as an Independent Nation State under international law and practice, both de jure and de facto.

The Chechen Republic of Ichkeria qualifies as an Independent Nation State under international law and practice in its own right. It must be recognized as such by the other governments of the world. Such diplomatic recognition will send a strong message to the Russian Federation that it must terminate its ongoing genocide against the Chechen People in gross violation of the 1948 Genocide Convention.

According to Article I of the Genocide Convention, all contracting parties thereto have an obligation “to prevent” this ongoing Russian genocide against the Chechens. We call upon all governments of the world to recognize the Chechen Republic of Ichkeria in order “to prevent” further Russian genocide against the Chechen People, as these governments are required to do by Article I of the Genocide Convention. We also call upon all people of good faith and good will around the world to demand that their own governments recognize the Chechen Republic of Ichkeria in order “to prevent” further Russian genocide against the Chechen People, as these governments are required to do by Article I of the Genocide Convention. Time is of the essence!

Mr. Francis A. Boyle is a Professor in International Law.

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