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Jordanian King Abdullah makes surprise appearance in Chechnya

Jordanian-Chechen relationships

Share on Facebook June 22, 2014, Reporter : europeonline, Reader : 612

King Abdullah meets with Chechen President Ramzan Kadyrov (Photo courtesy of Royal Court) news

Moscow (dpa) - Jordanian King Abdullah made a surprise visit to the Russian North Caucasus region of Chechnya Thursday, a trip billed as building up ties, but widely believed to be focused on interlinked issues of security and migration, reports europeonline journal.

During the meeting, King Abdullah commended the Jordanian-Chechen relationships, saying: “Our brotherly Chechens in Jordan are an integral constituent of Jordanian society with endless contributions to the country’s development.”
“This is my first visit to the Chechen Republic and I am looking forward to better bilateral relations and cooperation,” the King said, as quoted in a Royal Court statement.
For his part, President Kadyrov expressed his country’s keenness on enhancing its relations with Jordan, the statement said.
“Today we continue our ancestors’ efforts to improve relations between the two countries,” he said.Abdullah was greeted at the airport of the regional capital Grozny by Chechnya‘s Moscow-appointed leader, Ramzan Kadyrov, and other local officials.
Kadyrov said on his Instagram page that the visit was supposed to widen cooperation between Chechnya and Jordan.
Observers suggested that the king discussed security issues with Kadyrov. Jordan has a significant community of ethnic Chechens stemming from 19th century emigration from the Russian empire, while Chechens are thought to make up a significant proportion of Islamic State fighters, who are currently spreading unrest in Iraq.
The Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant - currently waging offensives in Syria and Iraq - claims that up to 2,000 fighters in both regions are from the Caucasus.
Kadyrov, who has been battling Islamist insurgents in Chechnya and neighbouring regions, has in the past vehemently denounced Chechen jihadists in the Middle East.
Moscow strongly backs Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in the conflict in Syria.
Abdullah‘s visit is highly unusual because foreign leaders usually do not visit Russian regions without stopping in Moscow before.
Western officials have avoided Chechnya altogether in recent years because of Kadyrov‘s image as a ruthless strongman. Human rights organizations accuse him of torturing and killing dissenters at home and abroad.
Abdullah left Chechnya after only a few hours and arrived in Kazakhstan Thursday evening, the Jordanian Royal Court said. The King is expected to begin talks with President Nursultan Nazarbayev on Friday.> more...

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