Moscow: The Chechen Islamist rebel leader who
is Russia`s most wanted man has issued an appeal for recruits
for a "total war" against the Russian state, in a new video
message posted on Thursday.
"A total war is in progress, fight the enemy where ever
you can," Doku Umarov said standing alongside two other
militants in a snow-covered forest in a video posted on
militant website hunafa.com.
As well as repeating calls for women to join the
rebellion, Umarov called on Russian Muslims from outside the
Caucasus like the Volga regions of Tatarstan and Bashkortostan
to join the insurgency.
"Jihad is becoming necessary for all of us," Umarov said,
wearing snow camouflage. "Spring has come, so, brothers, I ask
you to step up Jihad against enemies of Allah.
"Today children don`t have to ask their parents for
permission to start Jihad, wives don`t have to ask their
husbands` permission," he said, standing between two younger
men one of whom clutched onto a Kalashnikov rifle with a
The outside conditions appeared to prevent the full
message from being recorded as gusts of wind silenced parts of
his eight-minute address, while the person holding the camera
periodically said short prayers in a loud whisper.
"I call on you to destroy Allah`s enemies wherever you
have them, wherever your hands reach you may open a front...
When there is a total war, there are no more civilian objects
or civilian population," Umarov said, addressing Muslims
outside the Caucasus region.
Umarov, whose Caucasus Emirate group aims to impose
Islamic rule throughout the Northern Caucasus, has claimed
responsibility for the Moscow airport attack in January that
killed 37 and the 2010 metro attacks that killed 40.
He and his band of guerrillas have avoided Russian troops
in the North Caucasus mountains for much of the past decade,
and officials have wrongly pronounced him dead several times.
The Kremlin fought two wars against separatist rebels in
Chechnya in the past 15 years. But the insurgency has since
become more Islamist in tone and much of the violence has
spread to neighbouring regions.