A Message of Condolence to the American people from Chechen President Maskhadov

12 September 2001

To : The White House, the U.S. Congress and the U.S. Department of State

Dear Americans:

Please, accept our sincerest and deepest condolences in connection with the tragic consequences of the most terrible terrorist attack in the history of mankind.

We, Chechens,deeply grieve together with you. The Chechens are a small people, however, we are experiencing a tragedy of our own and deeply sympathize with the misery that grips all of America today. Chechens themselves for two centuries have been victims of a policy of Russian terrorism, and consequently we understand American sorrow. State terrorism is a guileful policy because it is a policy without rules.

Why do we Chechens so sincerely and deeply grieve together with you, America? Because America is the only country in today's world in which there are traditions to protect oppressed peoples from suppression. You, America, are our only hope for the future, the only hope for peace in our land that is saturated with blood. Our Chechen land is being destroyed by a policy of state terrorism. Undoubtedly, the attack against America is a strike against the peace of the whole world. We believe that it is also a strike against Chechnya and against other oppressed nations.

We, Chechens, are deeply indignant of the undisguised triumph of Mr.Yasrzhembski and of some other public figures in Moscow who are cynically trying to exploit the tragedy in America to justify Russia's own policy of state terror in Chechnya.

We are angrily agitated and protest against any kind of deceitful political speculation by any states, first of all by Russia, on the grief of the American people.

With regard to who did it, Russia would better be quiet. Russia does not and never in its history did wage war against terrorism. It is in fact incapable of this with regard to its nature. Indeed, it isn't capable not just by accident, but because of the very power of its nature and state traditions. During the last two years Moscow has begun an amorous affair - with all the seemingly forever forgotten diplomatic kisses - to approach precisely those regimes that support state terrorism.

Mr. Yasrzhembski, in view of, apparently, insufficiency of mind, has tried to draw parallels between the American tragedy and Chechnya. Naturally, he is doing this to seek justification for Russia's war against the Chechen people who have been branded as terrorists and bandits.

If we are to speak about parallels, indeed, there are parallels: the murder of tens of thousands of innocent citizens in the name of Russia's criminal-political intentions, the destruction of thousands of civil objects not only on the territory of Chechnya, but also the blowing up of apartment houses in Moscow, Volgodonsk, Buinaksk in 1999, carried out by terrorists from Moscow with the sole purpose of developing a pretext for the subsequent immoral terrorist war in the Chechen Republic.

Chechens despise the policy of terrorism and consequently we have always condemned and we will continue to condemn similar methods in the future. Chechen soldiers, despite two barbarous wars against their peaceful population, have not conducted a single act of terrorism against civilians of the opponent. The policy of terror against civilians is against the Chechen mentality and national culture.

We, Chechens, grieve together with you, America. We pray for innocent victims. And we ask God to help you, America, to punish those people and those states that are responsible for this barbarous act.

With deep sorrow,

Aslan Maskhadov
President of the Chechen Republic of Ichkeria