His extended absence was due to the small matter of his being banned from the platform late last year as a result of US sanctions.
Kadyrov has been the leader of Chechnya, a Muslim majority region of Russia, since 2007. His reign, with support and funding of Russian president Vladimir Putin, has been one filled with lavish luxury for himself, the rebuilding of the destroyed city of Groznyy, a crackdown on LGBT Chechens, and a general climate of fear and repression.
For those reasons, he was one of a number of individuals sanctioned under the US’s Global Magnitsky Act last December, resulting in Facebook — Instagram’s parent company — removing him from both services.
A spokesperson for Instagram was not immediately able to provide the reason why Kadyrov had regained access to his account.
Rather than giving you a snippet of the caption that went with the picture, we believe you need to read a translation of the thing in full.
“PISTOL. How much I have to tell you, my friend. As if in this silence only you and me. How many difficult years have we lived with you? How many accurate lead ‘words’ you said to enemies and villains defending my honor, dignity and life. You became my brother. Devoted and silent. Faithful and selfless.[…] In the daytime, playing with the rays of a peaceful summer sun and a frosty night in the war, like an unpretentious comrade, there was no doubt about it. I look at you as a humble teacher, who gives me short, but very wise advice and mentally repeat them …
“Honor a weapon and it will be a faithful guardian of your honor,” “Keep your weapon clean and it will not stain your conscience”, ” If you took out a gun – do not bother him, he knows his work better, “”If you fuss, then the best place for your weapon is a museum …”
You are a member of my family. My children love you. Only my stern look stops them from playing a funny game with you. How cute you are asleep under my pillow, leaning your hand on my palm. And when, before going to bed, I get a silver clip from you, I see a slender row of fighters with sparkling helmets. They rush into battle, fully entrusting me with their own destiny. And here I remember my brothers. Its fighting COMRADE. And then comes peace. And with him, and undisturbed sleep. And then I wish you good night. GUN, MY BROTHER.”
He also lamented how in the time he’d been deprived of Instagram access, “thousands of residents of Chechnya and other regions could not directly contact me, who previously, bypassing all bureaucratic authorities, raised problems and promptly received help on vital issues.”
We will update this post if Instagram explains why Kadyrov’s account has been reactivated.