The Russian city of Makhachkala, where the Boston bombing suspects are from, used to be one of Spokane’s sister cities.
“The people were wonderful, helpful and friendly,” recalls former Spokane Mayor Sheri Barnard, who visited Makhachkala in 1991 as part of a local delegation recognizing the civic relationship. “It was one of the highlights of my time in office.”
A statue from the Russian city, located on the shores of the Caspian Sea near the breakaway republic of Chechnya, was given to Spokane as a gift in 1991 and remains standing along the Centennial Trail in Riverfront Park. Makhachkala is the capital city of the Russian Republic of Dagestan.
Spokane severed formal sister city ties with Makhachkala during the early to mid-1990s after losing contact with city leaders in the years following the collapse of the Soviet Union.