Enjoying ad-free content?
Since July 1, 2024, we have disabled all ads to improve your reading experience.
This commitment costs us $10,000 a month. Your support can help us fill the gap.
Support us
Our journalism is banned in Russia. We need your help to keep providing you with the truth.

Anti-Kadyrov Chechen YouTuber Reappears After ‘Assassination’ Claims

Tumso Abdurakhmanov, a YouTuber based in Sweden, disappeared in late November as the Chechen opposition claimed he had been shot dead. youtube.com/@AbuSaddamShishani

A dissident blogger who is a vocal critic of Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov turned up alive Tuesday after going missing for more than two months.

Tumso Abdurakhmanov, a YouTuber based in Sweden, disappeared in late November as the Chechen opposition claimed he had been shot dead amid a string of politically motivated murders of ethnic Chechens outside Russia.

The Swedish authorities had not commented on the reports of Abdurakhmanov’s death, but days later a German court official said he was alive and the Chechen opposition said he was under the protection of Swedish police. 

Early on Tuesday, Abdurakhmanov appeared in a video titled “The Return” on his YouTube channel after a three-month absence from the platform.

“I’m alive and in good health,” he said without addressing the reasons for his abrupt disappearance.

The Chechen human rights group Vayfond said it had been contacted by Abdurakhmanov hours earlier but was unaware of other details, including where he is currently based.

“We assume he himself can’t comment on anything due to secrecy,” a Vayfond representative told the Novaya Gazeta Europe news site.

Swedish media had said Abdurakhmanov was a witness in a criminal case into the attempted murder of his younger brother in Germany.

Abdurakhmanov previously survived a hammer attack in Sweden in 2020. A Swedish court sentenced a male suspect in that attack to 10 years in prison and a female suspect to eight years.

Abdurakhmanov had lived in exile since 2015 to escape what he had described as threats to his life in Chechnya, a southern Russian region ruled by Kremlin loyalist Kadyrov.

Kadyrov’s close ally Magomed Daudov had declared a so-called “blood feud” against Abdurakhmanov in March 2019 for calling his father and former Chechen leader Akhmat Kadyrov a “traitor.”

… we have a small favor to ask. As you may have heard, The Moscow Times, an independent news source for over 30 years, has been unjustly branded as a "foreign agent" by the Russian government. This blatant attempt to silence our voice is a direct assault on the integrity of journalism and the values we hold dear.

We, the journalists of The Moscow Times, refuse to be silenced. Our commitment to providing accurate and unbiased reporting on Russia remains unshaken. But we need your help to continue our critical mission.

Your support, no matter how small, makes a world of difference. If you can, please support us monthly starting from just $2. It's quick to set up, and you can be confident that you're making a significant impact every month by supporting open, independent journalism. Thank you.

paiment methods
Not ready to support today?
Remind me later.

Read more