Khamzat Chimaev has shared another picture of himself with Ramzan Kadyrov. It is not clear if the photo was taken recently but the UFC fighter appears to be doubling down on his support of the Chechen warlord who has played an active part in the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

At UFC 280 there was an altercation between Chimaev and Khabib Nurmagomedov. The latter used to enjoy a close relationship with Kadyrov although there was some speculation they had become estranged.

The relationship between Chimaev and Kadyrov is extremely close and the UFC welterweight contender was accompanied to Abu Dhabi last week by the dictator’s son. He was an interested bystander during the melee with Nurmagomedov’s team.

Afterwards Kadyrov assured his 8.1 million Instagram followers that there was no issue between the two fighters he has unofficially adopted:

Making headlines

He wrote in Russian that the altercation was the result of ‘a misunderstanding that has been resolved’. Kadyrov has been making headlines due to his staunch support of Vladimir Putin and he has sent troops to Ukraine to fight alongside the Russian army.

He supposedly sent his sons to the frontline and then shared a video of them ‘gifting him’ two Ukrainian prisoners of war which has been widely condemned. In a video posted on his Telegram channel this week he attacked the west for allowing same sex couples to adopt children and accused liberals of being ‘satanic’.

Chimaev grew up in Sweden and the country has officially denounced Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. But the 28 year old, who was born in Chechnya, is doubling down on his support of Kadyrov:


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Khamzat Chimaev (@khamzat_chimaev)

Human rights

Kadyrov has been accused of massive human rights abuses, including extrajudicial killings, torture, kidnapping, and the persecution of homosexuals. He has also been accused of involvement in numerous targeted killings of political and personal opponents.

His MMA promotion, Absolute Championship Akhmat, was forced to cancel plans to expand all over Europe with international events. Its YouTube channel was also taken down due to the sanctions.

But he has always been keen to publicize his relationship with MMA fighters and Chimaev is clearly his favourite. For his part the #3 ranked welterweight appears happy to pose with a man more closely associated with human rights abuses than sport.