Chechen forces consisting of 4 battalions, named "Ahmed Forces" after Chechen leader Akhmad Kadyrov, are 10,<> strong and have carried out several attacks in Ukrainian cities, and are semi-affiliated with the Russian army despite including volunteers from outside the army.
On June 26, 2022, Chechen President Ramadan Kadyrov announced his intention to form 4 Chechen special military battalions and declared them subordinate to the Chechen Ministry of Defense.
It is 4 battalions (Ahmed North, Ahmed South, Ahmed East and Ahmed West). These battalions will include huge numbers of exclusively Chechen fighters who will join the ranks of the Russian Defence Ministry, he said.
The Chechen president gave the four battalions the name of his father Ahmed, also known as the "Akhmat" forces in a special symbolism for him, and a motivator for Chechen soldiers, especially since Akhmad Kadyrov is considered a national leader in Chechnya.
The Ukrainian media sees Ahmed's special forces as "terrifying", as they are the only forces from outside Russia and Ukraine that participate in the war directly, while the rest of the non-Chechen countries have only provided logistical support, especially European countries supporting Ukraine.
Composition and objectives
Ahmed's Chechen Special Forces were formed to support Russia in its war on Ukraine, consisting of 10,<> soldiers, and are part of the Chechen army, as headed by General Abte Aladdinov.
The battalions are armed with the latest and most powerful Russian weapons, and some newspapers have indicated that they possess Russian tanks and vehicles.
All vehicles of Ahmed's Chechen forces bear the "Z" logo, the emblem of support for Russian forces in Ukraine.
Tasks and rituals
The "Ahmed Forces" battalions have rituals and traditions that they are keen on before all their operations, including the call to prayer among the elements, holding what they call "conquest prayer" and then entering Ukrainian cities to "liberate" them from what Ramadan Kadyrov calls "neo-Nazis".
Another ritual of the Ahmad Brigades is takbeer, which is a constant tradition, and it has a special song entitled "Akhmat Sila", whose lyrics glorify the strength of the fighters of the Caucasus, praise the "knights" and are proud of their cooperation and brotherhood.
"Ahmed's Forces" as an alternative to "Wagner"
The Russian Ministry of Defense announced that the Chechen forces of Ahmed "Akhmat detachments" launched successful attacks on the Marinka axis, and were concentrated in the eastern part of Ukraine, in the Donetsk region.
Chechen President Kadyrov said Ahmad's forces were ready to take the place of Wagner's forces in the Ukrainian city of Artyumovsk.
On May 2023, <>, the founder of the Russian Wagner forces, Yevgeny Prigozhin, announced his readiness to hand over the positions in the city of Artiomov to Ahmed's Chechen forces.
Military expert Brigadier General Elias Hanna says that the transfer of operations from one military group to another "a military operation that has its conditions and is not an easy matter," and analyzes this as "a Russian transition from the stage of attack to defense, in anticipation of a Ukrainian counterattack."
British professor Michael Clark believes that "Russia seeks to take advantage of the prevailing perception of Chechen fighters that they are comparable to the Russians in toughness and ferocity, and they do not care much about international law, which may change the course of the war into street and guerrilla warfare."
Attempted assassination of battalion commander
On February 13, 2023, the Chechen president announced an attempted poisoning of his aide and commander of Ahmed's special forces, Alaa al-Dinov.
This was after Aladinov received an envelope on February 8 containing a letter, which turned out to be saturated with a toxic substance.
In March, the commander of Ahmed's special forces said he had "not yet fully recovered, because it takes a long time."
In June 2023, Kadyrov announced that Ahmed's special forces were ready to launch a new offensive in Donetsk.
"A regiment has been assigned under my command, and two other regiments, in preparation for active offensive actions," he said on his Telegram channel, stressing the efficiency of Ahmed's special forces and their ability to perform any task assigned to them.
On the part of the commander of the forces, General Alaa al-Dinov said, "If we are taken to the direction of Donetsk, I guarantee that the special forces (Ahmed) will do everything for the liberation of the Donetsk People's Republic."