Leader of the Russian autonomous region of Chechnya, Ramzan Kadyrov, has this week been granted honorary membership of Russia’s biggest biker gang, the ‘Night Wolves’.
The President of the North Caucasus republic shared the news over the weekend via his popular Instagram account, writing “at the general decision of the veterans of the club, I was included in the Night Wolves.”
A gala by members of the club was thrown to honour Kadyrov in which he was inducted to the club and awarded the club’s ceremonial bracelet.
During the event Kadyrov praised the patriotism and support of the gang, especially that of their leader, Zaldostanov. In an address to the gathered audience Kadyrov said “this is a man with a public mindset, a clear and firm stance on major issues.”
President of the club Alexander Zaldostanov also honoured the memory of Kadyrov’s father, Akhmad Kadyrov, who was killed in 2004.
The Night Wolves were invited by to the Chechen capital of Grozny by the president of the republic, who ensured a high level of security was achieved during the day-long ceremony.
The biker gang, known in Russia as Nochniye Volki, formed in the 1980s and are frequently referred to as Russia’s Hell’s Angels. The group are known for their anti-Soviet sentiment and have been dubbed patriots by Russian authorities.
In 2011 Putin honoured the group’s leader Alexander Zaldostanov with a medal for “activity in the patriotic education of young people” at a bike show attended by the Russian President.