In the last two years in the North Caucasus has been a decline in violence. This is partly due to the fact that most of the militants fled the region and joined the armed groups in Iraq and Syria, and Russian intelligence services were there to help them. This is stated in the report of the International crisis group (ICG) is an independent non-profit organization with headquarters in Brussels dedicated to the study of conflict zones around the world.
“On the eve of the Olympics, Russian forces opened the border to local radicals to give them the opportunity to travel outside of the North Caucasus, while at the same time the authorities have criminalized participation in armed groups abroad “for the purposes contradicting the interests of the Russian Federation”, — stated in the report.
However, since the second half of 2014, the Russian authorities have reduced the outflow of extremists, and started “hunting” as recruiters and fundraisers for the Islamic state and the potential of the militants, the authors of the report.
The authors refer to publications in the media, messages, sources, expert opinions and other reports on this issue, just used more than 200 references.
It notes that the ICG source in law enforcement bodies of Dagestan “expressly recognized” control over the flow of Islamists by the security forces. “We opened the border and helped them to get out of here, and then closed them over the border, introducing criminal liability for participation in such actions. If they now want to come back, we are waiting for them and ready to “accept” its borders. Everybody’s happy: they die on the way to Allah, we have no terrorist attacks, and we bomb them in Latakia and Idlib. Public policy should be pragmatic. It has been very effective”, — quotes the report quoted the source as saying.
According to “Kommersant”, the experts surveyed confirmed that before the Olympics the Russian security services through its agents helped extremist people to leave Russia. “In Dagestan, there were many cases when people associated with the secret police, selflessly took foreign passports to young people wishing to travel to Turkey and then to Syria”, — said the newspaper the political scientist Ruslan Martagov.
The North Caucasus is the most intense region of Russia from the point of view of extremism. Since the beginning of the second Chechen war in 1999, the militants staged in the region for more than 75 terrorist attacks and carried out hundreds of attacks on security forces and officials, the authors write. In 2009, the center for violence has shifted from Chechnya to Dagestan. In 2014 year of the winter Olympics in Sochi — the number of victims of militant attacks in the region has decreased by 46% in 2015 decreased by 51%, according to the ICG report.
In February 2014, in Russia the punishment for extremist articles was increased. Increased criminal liability for crimes of an extremist orientation, in addition, the criminal code was amended to include a responsibility for participation in illegal armed groups abroad.
According to the FSB of Russia for the end of 2015, in the activities of international terrorist organizations in Syria and Iraq participate 2,900 citizens of Russia.