Ramzan Kadyrov Lashes out at Instagram after Sniper Video Removal
Ramzan Kadyrov has accused Instagram of bowing to US pressure after the social network removed a video he posted showing Russian opposition leader Mikhail Kasyanov in a sniper’s gunsights.
Instagram said the video posted by the Chechen leader had “violated the requirement to respect other members” of the social network.
In a new Instagram post, Ramzan Kadyrov said he had been punished for saying “a few words about the USA’s guard dogs”.
Ramzan Kadyrov’s video showed former Russian PM Mikhail Kasyanov as a sniper’s target.
Mikhail Kasyanov is a high-profile critic of Russian President Vladimir Putin, in the opposition RPR-Parnas party.
Ramzan Kadyrov has recently called Vladimir Putin’s critics “enemies” and “traitors”.
In his latest post on Instagram, Ramazan Kadyrov said: “Here it is, the much-acclaimed freedom of speech, American style!
“You can write anything you want, but do not touch America’s dogs, friends of the Department of State and Congress. You know very well whom I am talking about!”
Mikhail Kasyanov and other Russian opposition politicians described the sniper video as a murder threat.
In March 2015, Ramzan Kadyrov spoke out on Instagram about the assassination of opposition leader Boris Nemtsov in Moscow, defending one of the Chechens charged over the shooting.
A day later, President Vladimir Putin gave the Chechen leader a top award.
Boris Nemtsov is among several well-known opponents of Vladimir Putin who have been murdered in the past decade.
Ramzan Kadyrov runs Chechnya with an iron fist – his private militia has been accused of widespread human rights abuses, including torture and assassination.
He has close ties to Vladimir Putin, who encouraged him to stamp out a separatist insurgency in Chechnya.
Thousands of civilians died in the North Caucasus republic when Russian troops fought the rebels there in the 1990s.