London, UK, October 3 – Hizb ut-Tahrir Britain, the non-violent Islamic political party, will lead a London demonstration against the Russian President, Vladimir Putin, on Tuesday [4 October 2005] as he visits the UK for a EU-Russia summit hosted by UK Prime Minister Tony Blair. Hundreds of demonstrators will protest against the ongoing genocide in Chechnya perpetrated by Putin and will draw attention to the hypocrisy of Western governments that ally themselves with a brutal dictator who orders the torture, rape and killing of Chechen civilians in the name of the 'war on terror'. The demonstration will also be attended by representatives of other Muslim groups and Chechen rights activists.
Over the last decade Russia has been engaged in a genocidal war against Chechnya. At least half of Chechnya's pre-war (1991) population of one million is either dead or displaced and Chechnya's capital Grozny and many of her major towns and villages are devastated with large areas remaining uninhabitable. The Putin backed administration in Chechnya acknowledges that Russian forces conduct an average of 109 extra-judicial executions in Chechnya each month. Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International have reported thousands of disappearances with uncounted cases of extra-judicial killings and torture by the Russian Forces. According to Memorial, Russia's leading human rights organization, Chechnya's per capita murder rate now exceeds the equivalent figure at the height of Stalin's purges.
Taji Mustafa, a media representative of Hizb ut-Tahrir Britain and speaker at the demonstration, said, "This demonstration will expose the ongoing genocide in Chechnya at the hands of Putin – the butcher of Grozny. It will also expose how Blair and Bush are willing to turn a blind eye to genocide when it suits their interests. The red carpet treatment for Putin is evidence that Blair believes that Putin is a good man to do business with."
"Western governments, Russia and China are involved in a 'Great Game' in Central Asia to secure access to the vast energy resources and ensure that the people of the region do not remove the repressive regimes and establish the Caliphate, a representative and accountable system of Islamic governance. While regime change in Ukraine and Georgia is welcomed as people power the repressive governments of the region have a free rein to suppress peaceful Islamic political resurgence in the name of the 'war on terror'."
The peaceful demonstration will take place on Tuesday 4th October 2005 at 9.30 a.m. outside Lancaster House [Stable Yard, St James's, London, SW1; nearest underground Green Park].