grozni - The leader of the Russian Republic of Chechnya, Ramzan Kadirov, says he is prepared to step down. The Kremlin may elect its successor, said the leader who is often seen as the strong arm of Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Kadirov is accused of large-scale human rights violations, arbitrary arrests and torture.
The former Islamist rebel led Chechnya since 2007 and received the blessing of Putin last year to continue his work.
During a television interview Kadirov was asked if he was willing to resign. ' You could say that that is my dream '', was his answer. 'Once it was necessary for people like me to fight, to put things right. Now we have order and prosperity and the time has come for changes in the Chechen Republic. ''
Kremlin spokesperson Dmitri Peskov said in a comment that 'Ramzan remains the current head of the republic'. Furthermore, he did not respond to the words of Kadirov.