Unrest at Dagestan Airport Sparks Tensions Between Russia and Ukraine
In an incident that has drawn widespread attention, Dagestan’s main airport witnessed an outbreak of unrest on October 29, during the arrival of a flight from Israel. The Russian government has attributed the disturbance to what they describe as „external interference.“ This disruption led to the closure of the airport in Dagestan, a region with a Muslim-majority population. Russian authorities have emphasized that they will not tolerate any actions aimed at dividing Russian society.
The Kremlin has pointed to Ukraine as playing a significant role in fueling the anti-Israel protests and the subsequent violence at the airport. They have also alluded to Western interference in this matter.
The incident saw hundreds of individuals storming the airport under the guise of protesting the arrival of a flight from Israel during the conflict in Gaza. The crowd breached security measures, with some even reaching the airport’s runway before being removed by security forces. This resulted in injuries, with twenty people, including nine police officers, reportedly harmed. The authorities have subsequently apprehended 60 individuals actively involved in the unrest.
Russia’s foreign ministry specifically accused Kyiv of being involved in orchestrating the airport turmoil. Dagestan’s governor, Sergei Melikov, also laid blame on a particular social media channel called „Utro Dagestan,“ which he claims is operated by individuals in Ukraine he referred to as „traitors.“ This channel, boasting approximately 60,000 followers, had called for a mass gathering at the airport to prevent „undesirable“ passengers from boarding the scheduled flight from Israel.
Additionally, Moscow has accused unnamed foreign entities of inflaming the situation by using images of suffering from Gaza to stoke tensions. The Kremlin spokesperson, Dmitry Peskov, stated that the events at Makhachkala airport were, to a significant extent, a consequence of external interference.
President Vladimir Putin is set to hold discussions with Russia’s defense minister and intelligence chiefs to address what has been described as „the West’s attempts to use the events in the Middle East to divide Russian society.“
The unrest at the airport was marked by an angry crowd, reacting to the landing of a Russian Red Wings airline flight from Israel. Social media footage from the protests revealed demonstrators breaking glass doors, running through the airport, and, regrettably, chanting anti-Jewish slogans. On the airport’s landing field, some individuals were seen waving Palestinian flags, while others checked the passports of incoming passengers.
Despite the volatile situation, it’s important to note that Israel is expanding its ground operations in the Gaza Strip. Officials in Gaza report a significant number of casualties, primarily among the Palestinian population, since the conflict began.
In conclusion, the incident at Dagestan’s airport underscores the complexities and challenges surrounding the ongoing conflicts in the Middle East, with potential repercussions in other regions.