Instagram video removal angers Chechen leader Kadyrov

  02 February 2016    Read: 683
Instagram video removal angers Chechen leader Kadyrov
Chechnya`s leader Ramzan Kadyrov has accused Instagram of bowing to US pressure, after it removed a video he posted showing a Russian opposition leader in a sniper`s gunsights.
Instagram said the video had "violated the requirement to respect other members" of the social network.

In a new Instagram post Mr Kadyrov said he had been punished for saying "a few words about the USA`s guard dogs".

His video showed former Russian PM Mikhail Kasyanov as a sniper`s target.

Mr Kasyanov is a high-profile critic of Russian President Vladimir Putin, in the opposition RPR-Parnas party.

The Chechen leader has recently called Mr Putin`s critics "enemies" and "traitors".

In his latest post on Instagram, Mr 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!"

Mr Kasyanov and other Russian opposition politicians described the sniper video as a murder threat.

Last March Mr 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 Putin gave Mr Kadyrov a top award.

Mr Nemtsov is among several well-known opponents of Mr Putin who have been murdered in the past decade.

Mr 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 Mr 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.

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