Ayrat Nasimovich Vakhitov has been a member of terrorist organizations operating in the Northern Caucasus, Russian Federation since 1998. Vakhitov has repeatedly participated in attacks against representatives of Russian law
–enforcement agencies. Vakhitov was involved in recruiting fighters for North Caucasus terrorist groups in the Republic of Tatarstan, Russian Federation.
In 2000, Vakhitov underwent combat training in one of the camps of Islamic Party of Turkestan, listed as the Eastern Turkistan Islamic Movement (ETIM) (QDe.088) located in the Republic of Tajikistan, after which he was deployed to Afghanistan.
In 2010, Vakhitov underwent additional training in terrorist camps in the Afghanistan/Pakistan border area, after which he joined the ranks of “Bulgarskiy Jamaat”. In late 2012, a part of Jamaat members led by Vakhitov left for Syrian Arab Republic, where they joined the Al-Nusrah Front for the People of the Levant (ANF) (QDe.137), making up the so-called “Bulgar Group”.
Currently, Vakhitov leads a group of about 100 fighters, which mostly consist of natives of the North Caucasus and Povolzhye regions of the Russian Federation.
In 2012-2013, Vakhitov was involved in recruiting Russian citizens over the Internet and social networks in the interests of the ANF, specifically to replenish its ranks and thereafter fight on the group’s behalf.