Khabib Nurmagomedov's Role in Cultural Censorship in Dagestan



Last week, a play titled Hunting for Men was shown at the Makhachkala Friendship House in the Republic of Dagestan. The performance featured a now-infamous scene with a woman seducing a man while dressed in lingerie. The scene was recorded by several of the attendees and spread through social media. Eventually, Khabib Nurmagomedov came across the video. The UFC champion criticized the scene as “filth” and demanded that those behind the play be held responsible. Nurmagomedov’s comments stoked outrage within his native republic, gained traction among local politicians, fellow athletes, and caused the play’s producer to receive alleged threats on social media.


The controversial play is a romantic comedy about a woman in search of new pleasures after her husband begins to lose interest in her. While none of the scenes featured nudity, one of the main characters does appear in lingerie during a portion of the play. This was enough for Nurmagomedov to label the display as “pornography” and demand an investigation into all those involved with the play.


“My advice to the leadership of Dagestan, organize an investigation, and the organizers receive punishment according to the law and apologize to the people, and in future for this never to be repeated, that events of this type are controlled at the level of the ministers and leaders of the Republic,” said Nurmagomedov, who later deleted the image of the woman in lingerie and replaced it with a black screen.


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