Chechen tyrant Ramzan Kadyrov, who led the brutal gay purges, ‘hospitalised with severe coronavirus’


Ramzan Kadyrov, the Chechen tyrant who orchestrated the region’s brutal gay purges, has reportedly been hospitalised with severe coronavirus symptoms.

Kadyrov is president of the Chechen republic in Russia, where LGBT+ people have been imprisoned, beaten, tortured and killed in gay concentration camps.

Despite countless refugee reports detailing the violent abuses they have suffered, Kadyrov has forcefully denied that the crackdown ever happened.

“This is nonsense,” he previously said when asked about the allegations. “We don’t have those kinds of people here. We don’t have any gays. If there are any, take them to Canada.

“Praise be to God. Take them far from us so we don’t have them at home. To purify our blood, if there are any here, take them.”

In what will no doubt be a fortunate twist of fate for the region’s remaining LGBT+ population, Kadyrov now appears to have earned the title of the first Russian official to fall seriously ill in the coronavirus pandemic.

According two Russian state news agencies, RIA Novosti and Tass, Kadyrov was flown to a clinic in Moscow as his symptoms rapidly deteriorated.

“Ramzan Kadyrov has been brought to Moscow by plane with suspected coronavirus. He is currently under medical observation,” Tass said, citing “a source in medical circles”.

Vladimir Putin

Kadyrov speaking with Putin in 2013 (ALEXEY DRUZHININ/AFP/Getty)

Although Chechen officials have not yet confirmed the news, the digital news outlet Baza also reported that there had been damage to Kadyrov’s lungs.

The reports were contested by Akhmed Dudayev, the head of Chechnya’s state-run TV channel, who wrote on Instagram that Kadyrov “is personally in control of the situation and taking all necessary measures. The work of his headquarters is under his personal control.”

After being appointed by Putin in 2017, Kadyrov has since turned the region into a personal fiefdom, developing a powerful national guard and a cult of personality. He has no clear successor.

He has made a limited number of public appearances recently, although he did feature in a heavily edited video of a government coronavirus briefing released on Sunday.