Oct 08, 2016 1:11 AM GMT
Ramzan A. Kadyrov, the Chechen leader, with his mother, Aymani, outside a polling station last month
NYT: Ramzan A. Kadyrov, the leader of the Russian republic of Chechnya, has long sought to project himself as a muscle-bound brawler. He scares critics, wears camouflage and orders women to stay home. Now Mr. Kadyrov is publicly indoctrinating his three young sons in how to show off his model of Chechen manhood.
The sons — Akhmad, 10, Eli, 9, and Adam, 8 — were among the fighters in a mixed martial arts tournament broadcast Tuesday on Russian television from Grozny, the Chechen capital.
The child fighters, shirtless and wearing no protection, punched and kicked their young opponents in the head during the spectacle. All three Kadyrov sons won their bouts and received gold belts at the end of the tournament.
Mr. Kadyrov, who celebrated his 40th birthday on Wednesday, bragged about their exploits, posted some of the fights on his Instagram account and proclaimed that Akhmad, who knocked down his opponent within a few seconds, had shown “real masculine character.”