The president of Chechnya and one of Putin’s biggest supporters and a big supporter of Putin’s invasion of Ukraine, Ramzan Kadyrov, said in a statement published on the Telegram application that his time has come and that he wants to resign.
– We have a proverb among our people, the Chechens: no matter how much a guest is appreciated and long-awaited, if he leaves on time, then he is even more dear. I think my time has also come – he said in a video recorded in his luxurious residence in Grozny, according to the Telegraph.
Kadyrov’s father, Akhmad Kadyrov, initially fought against Russian forces after Chechens declared independence in 1994, but went over to the Russian side during the second Chechen war, becoming president of the region in 2003 after Moscow finally reestablished control, reports Forbes.
Samuel Ramani, a fellow at London’s Royal United Services Institute for Defense and Security Studies, said Kadyrov’s departure would be a huge blow to Putin.
– This is a drastic change, because a few days ago Kadyrov declared that his Chechen units will be ready to advance all the way to Europe – he said.
Other analysts were skeptical about the departure announcement.
– He said such things in the past – said Ivan Klyszcz, an analyst for the North Caucasus who works at the University of Tartu in Estonia.
– Such statements usually come when he wants to get something out of Putin, even if it was just a public expression of support – he added.