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Chechnya domestic violence escapee might have been murdered by relatives

According to the report made by human rights activists from the North Caucasus SOS (NC SOS) group on February 7, citing two independent sources, 26-year-old Seda Suleymanova may have fallen victim to an 'honor killing.'

In August 2023, Seda Suleymanova was abducted from her apartment in Saint Petersburg. The young woman and her boyfriend were summoned for interrogation on a burglary case and subsequently handed over to Chechen law enforcers. Seda was then forcibly taken back to her relatives in Chechnya, from whom she had escaped a year earlier due to threats of an 'honor killing.' Since her return to the republic, nobody has been able to reach her. 

Towards the end of August, Chechnya's ombudsman, Mansur Soltayev, published a photo with Seda Suleymanova amid public attention to the case, stating that 'she is not at risk.' In the photo, a mark resembling a bruise can be seen on Seda’s body. 

Human rights activists filed a request with the Investigative Committee and Prosecutor’s Office, demanding to check the information on Seda Suleymanova’s possible demise. 


In July 2023, Mansur Soltayev published a video with another Chechen resident, Selima Ismailova. The 20-year-old girl fled her house and attempted to go to Germany because of her father’s regular physical assaults and death threats. On June 12, she was apprehended at Vnukovo airport and handed over to her relatives. Soltayev called the activists, who tried to help the girl leave Russia, 'agents of the West,' whose goal is 'discrediting the Caucasus region and Russia in general.'

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