New articles by werldwayd on Wikipedia
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On 23 October 2017, I launched a page on Russian Chechen singer Zelim Bakaev who disappeared on a brief visit to his homeland Chechnya. His disappearance and possible murder is part of the anti-gay campaign of the Chechnyan authorities.
Zelimkhan Khoussainovich Bakaev (in Russian Зелимхан Хусаинович Бакаев) (born in Grozny, Chechen Republic, Russia on 23 April 1992) is a Russian Chechen singer. He disappeared in Chechnya on 8 August 2017 when he was on a brief visit to attend his sister’s wedding. Reports indicate his kidnapping by the Chechen authorities as part of their anti-gay purge and persecution of homosexuals in Chechnya. Some media reports say he is presumed dead as a result of torture suffered in captivity.
Career: Zelim Bakaev (sometimes Bakayev) was born to Khoussain and Malika Bakaev in Grozny, the capital of the Chechen Republic. Passionate of music, he began singing at a young age in Chechnya. He worked for a year and a half at the Department of Culture of the Grozny Mayor’s Office, and became a one of the soloists of the song and dance ensemble “Stolitsa” (in Russian, Столица) and performed concerts in Chechnya and other North Caucasian republics. His repertoire included songs in Chechen language and in Russian. He became popular particularly in Chechnya, Ingushetia, Dagestan and eventually in Russia. In 2013, he took part in the annual Vainakh Awards for upcoming artists. His big break came with singles like “Мичахь хьо лела безам”, “Доьхна Дог” and “Нана” (“Nana” in English) and in collaboration with Elbika Jamaldinova hits “Не хватает тебя” (Miss You) and “Без тебя” (Without You). He also cooperated with the producer Gilany Stadnik and was managed by Leila Vakhayeva. In 2017, Bakaev applied for casting in the Russian version of Star Academy called Fabrika Zvyozd in its 10th season. The series was to start in September 2017 on the Russian television chain Muz-TV.
Disappearance: On 6 August 2017, Bakaev travelled to Grozny to attend his sister’s wedding. He was due back in Moscow few days later as he was scheduled to take part in a Russian musical contest on August 10. On August 8, he was reportedly arrested by Special Rapid Deployment (SOBR) security forces, this according to two eyewitnesses as they recounted to Dozhd TV. Bakaev’s cellular phone was also disactivated the same day. Speculations ran that his arrest was for suspicion of being gay. Chechnyan authorities had declared an anti-LGBT campaign with many reports of persecution of homosexuals in the country. Bakaev had been previously forbidden from any public appearance in Chechnya. Bakaev’s mother Malika and his aunt received a message that Bakaev had “left” Chechnya. On August 18, Malika filed a complaint for her son’s disappearance with the Grozny police and on August 22 applied to the Human Rights Council demanding clarifications from them and the Chechen Interior ministry. The Chechen minister of Foreign Affairs and Information denied any involvement by the Chechen authorities in the affair. The Chechen police claimed that Bakaev had purchased a ticket for a train from Nalchik to Moscow with the departure on August 11. On September 14, the American human rights organization Human Rights First urged the US State Department to intervene with the Russian authorities about Zelim Bakaev. On 16 September 2017, the singer’s mother publicly appealed to Chechen president Ramzan Kadyrov asking about her son, but on September 18, the Chechen Ministry of Internal Affairs refused to open a criminal investigation into the disappearance of Bakaev. On 24 September 2017, a suspicious video appeared allegedly taken in Germany with a look-alike claiming to be Bakaev saying he was now in Germany. But many discrepancies were apparent including forced nature of the video, Russian furniture and equipment appearing in the footage including beverages and alcoholic brands not marketed in Germany. A high-ranking diplomat from the EU mission in Russia also confirmed that Bakaev did not cross the border of any of the Schengen countries in August 2017 or later.
In October 2017, the international press outlets, and primarily the LGBT media alleged the singer had died as a result of torture at the hands of the Chechen police as part of the Chechen government’s anti-gay purge.