A popular Chechen blogger and critic of the Russian region’s leader says he has survived an attempt on his life.
Tumso Abdurakhmanov captured the aftermath of the alleged attack in a video posted to YouTube, saying he fought off the assailant who was armed with a hammer. The attack happened in an unidentified EU country.
Russian authorities have not commented.
Two other Chechen exiles have been murdered in Germany and France in the past few months.
A Russian citizen was detained after the murder of a former rebel commander in Berlin last August and another Chechen blogger was murdered a month ago in Lille.
Mr Abdurakhmanov had previously claimed that the Lille killer was sent by Chechnya’s Kremlin-backed ruler Ramzan Kadyrov.
In a video posted to YouTube on Wednesday, Mr Abdurakhmanov said he had just fought off a man who attempted to murder him with a hammer.
When asked who sent him, the alleged attacker – lying bloodied on the ground – said he had come from Moscow, adding “they have my mother”.
The Chechen Human Rights Association shared the video, saying that an “unidentified person broke into Tumso’s apartment and tried to kill him with a hammer while he was sleeping.”
“A fight ensued, during which Tumso managed to neutralise the attacker and call the police. Tumso himself is in the hospital,” the group added.
Mr Abdurakhmanov was not available for comment.
What’s the background?
Mr Abdurakhmanov is one of Chechnya’s most popular bloggers, with his videos on YouTube typically gaining tens of thousands of views.
He is also an outspoken critic of President Kadyrov.
After two bloody conflicts between Chechen rebels and Russia, the southern Russian republic is now firmly under the control of Mr Kadyrov – a former rebel who switched sides and is now fiercely loyal to President Vladimir Putin.
Mr Abdurakhmanov fled the region in 2015.
The Chechen Human Rights Association said Magomed Daudov, a top official in the region, had “declared a blood feud on the blogger in the middle of last year”.
Wednesday’s reported attack came weeks after outspoken Chechen blogger Imran Aliev was found murdered in Lille.
Another Chechen exile, Zelimkhan Khangoshvili, died after being shot in the head from behind in a Berlin park last August.