Human Rights Issues in Eurasia / Правовые Вопросы В Регионах Евразии

Archive for September, 2009

EU human rights prize = Sakharov Prize 2009 for “Memorial” with Oleg Orlov and other human righst defenders in Russia

Posted by Info on 30/09/2009

The ten nominations for the 2009 Sakharov Prize, which the European Parliament awards each year to democracy and human rights campaigners, were officially presented at a meeting of MEPs on Wednesday. The winner will be chosen by Parliament’s political group leaders on 22 October.

The European Parliament’s Sakharov Prize, in its 21st edition, is awarded to “individuals who have made an important contribution to the fight for human rights or democracy”. It is named after Soviet nuclear physicist, dissident and political activist Andrei Sakharov, who received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1975.

There are: Lyudmila Alexeyeva, Oleg Orlov and Sergei Kovalev on behalf of Memorial and all other human rights defenders in Russia – Organisation promoting fundamental rights in post-Soviet states. The nomination says “Memorial promotes the truth about the political repression of the Soviet Union and fights against current human rights abuses in post-Soviet states to ensure their democratic future”.

Memorial – Organisation promoting fundamental rights in post-Soviet states, whose first leader was Andrei Sakharov. The nomination argues that “Memorial should be rewarded for its continued essential work in EU neighbouring countries monitoring the situation in countries of actual or potential conflict and human rights abuse in Azerbaijan, Armenia, Georgia, Tajikistan, Moldova and


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European Report on Georgia War Faults Both Sides / Georgia not happy

Posted by Info on 30/09/2009

The NY Times: An European Union inquiry into the August 2008 war in Georgia concludes that Georgia ignited the conflict by attacking separatists in South Ossetia, but that Russia had provoked violence in the enclave for years and exploited its consequences.

The report says that  Georgia broke international law by using force against Russian peacekeepers stationed in the city, and that Russia’s army had legal grounds to defend the peacekeepers.

But the report says Russia “went far beyond the reasonable limits of defense” in undertaking a drive outside South Ossetia that violated international law and was “not even remotely commensurate with the threat to Russian peacekeepers.”…..

…..that  Russia allowed “ethnic cleansing” in Georgian villages, dismissed Russian allegations that Georgia was carrying out genocide and said that Russia had acted illegally by distributing passports and by recognizing South Ossetia and Abkhazia as sovereign.…. more here

The NY Times: Hours after the European Union released a report on the origins of the August 2008 war in South Ossetia, Georgia challenged one of the main findings, saying a Russian invasion was already under way when Georgia attacked South Ossetia, a separatist enclave.

Georgian government said the European investigators had ignored evidence that Russian soldiers and volunteers were already in South Ossetia on Aug. 7 and that Georgia had therefore acted in self-defense.

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Russia retains PACE voting rights – but urges Russia to allow Monitors

Posted by Info on 30/09/2009

STRASBOURG: A PACE commission decided on Tuesday not to adopt a Georgian motion to strip Russia of its voting rights in the organization.

Georgia had proposed depriving Russia of its voting rights over its recognition of breakaway Abkhazia and South Ossetia after a brief war between the ex-Soviet states last August. 72 members of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe’s 642 members signed the motion.

The two ex-Soviet states fought a five-day war, when Tbilisi attacked South Ossetia and Moscow ejected Georgian troops from the region. Russia later recognized both of Georgia’s breakaway republics as independent states.South Ossetia and Abkhazia have also been recognized by Nicaragua and Venezuela.

BUT PACE urges Russia to allow EU monitors into Abkhazia, S.Ossetia

The Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) said on Tuesday that Russia should give EU monitors unrestricted access to Abkhazia and South Ossetia before the end of the year.

“Russia should also lift all restrictions on humanitarian aid to the two regions and let Georgian civilians move freely across the boundary lines,” PACE said in a resolution adopted by 80 votes to 36.

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Докладчик ПАСЕ призвал Россию прекратить блокировать реформу ЕСПЧ

Posted by Info on 30/09/2009

СТРАСБУРГ Докладчик ПАСЕ по Северному Кавказу Дик Марти призвал Россию прекратить блокировать реформу Страсбургского суда.

Марти заметил, что с весны 2008 года по лето 2009 года суд принял 82 решения, связанных с ситуацией на Северном Кавказе. Он добавил, что “Россия была осуждена за нарушение права на жизнь и другие права”.

Несколько лет назад Госдума РФ отклонила ратификацию 14-го протокола к Европейской конвенции по правам человека, регламентирующего реформу Страсбургского суда.  Страсбургу такое решение не понравилось, так как без подписи России документ не может вступить в силу.

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Kyrgyzstan: Leader of Parliamentary Social-Democratic and Former Kyrgyz Republic Ambassador Escaped to USA; WHY?

Posted by Info on 30/09/2009

Bakytbek Beshimov informed on September 15 during his lecture at John Hopkins University in Washington DC,  that he secretly escaped from Kyrgyzstan through Kazakhstan. Allegedly Russian political forces as well as local criminal leaders in Kyrgyzstan help the government put unprecedented pressure on their opponents.

“I was forced to temporarily leave the country due to direct attempt to physically kill me in August after long purposeful pursuit”, Bakyt Beshimov indicated in the letter, received by Ferghana.Ru editorial staff. However, the prominent Kyrgyz deputy and opposition leader never named the names that chased and attempted to kill him; instead, he only gave few negative comments, addressed to the current regime.

“On July 23 in Kyrgyzstan Bakiev finally liquidated the election process and closed up the opportunity for national development under civilized democratic way. Today, the state is managed by illegitimate criminal power that does not recognize basic rights of people to have independent opinion”, the leader of SDPK writes and says that he does not want to have anything in common with this power:

“I do not recognize such government. I would never consider cooperation with Bakiev until we see killed, assaulted, arrested and detained people that do not support the policy of current regime”.

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Безголосая Россия? – история учит нас тому, что она ничему не учит

Posted by Info on 30/09/2009

Несколько недель назад 72 парламентария подписали инициативу, внесенную грузинской делегацией, о лишении делегации России права голоса в ПАСЕ в связи с прошлогодними событиями в Южной Осетии.
Вопрос о лишении делегации РФ полномочий в Парламентской ассамблее Совета Европы (ПАСЕ) будет рассмотрен в четверг, 1 октября.

Валерий Борщев: Вы знаете, вообще когда, я помню, только Россия вошла в Совет Европы, были разные точки зрения. Были многиедепутаты, которые были категорически против того, чтобы мы были членами Совета Европы, а некоторые облекали свои возражения в такую интеллигентную форму, дескать, мы недостойны. Вот мы из тоталитарного режима..

Владимир Кара-Мурза: Научил ли чему-нибудь Кремль предыдущий прецедент лишения России подобных же прав за невыполнение резолюции по Чечне?
Валерий Борщев: Вот это правильный вопрос. Мы следуем по принципу Гегеля: история учит нас тому, что она ничему не учит….Возьмите конфликт с Украиной газовой. Свободно, спокойно можно было представить свою точку зрения и не было бы того позорища, который мы испытали. У нашей стороны были аргументы и были справедливые претензии к Украине. И смотрите, как повела себя мудро Украина. Они сразу в Евросоюз, они представили свои доводы. И Россия оказалась в проигрышной ситуации…

…это характеристика нашей политики – полностью игнорирование европейского сообщества и Совета Европы, Евросоюза. Вот этот лозунг: надо быть сильным, сильных уважают, а слабых бьют, ложный лозунг. Дело не в том, что ты будешь демонстрировать силу, а дело в том, что ты вступаешь в диалог, в дискуссию, в обсуждение, доказываешь свою точку зрения. Не происходит этого. Вот этому тот пример нас не научил. И когда сегодня ставится такой вопрос, естественно, потому что опять Россия еще хуже, чем раньше, ведет себя. Она не желает обсуждать эти проблемы……больше здесь

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Pешение Европейского суда по правам человека – “Россия исправно платит штрафы, а вот мер никаких не предпринимает”

Posted by Info on 30/09/2009

По словам руководителя московского представительства организации Human Rights Watch Эллисон Джилл, нынешний год был сущим кошмаром: в июле была убита правозащитница Наталья Эстемирова, тесно сотрудничавшая с организацией, а вскоре – правозащитники Зарема Сайдулаева и ее муж. При этом, отмечает Der Standard, их убийцы до сих пор разгуливают на свободе, как, впрочем, и в остальных зафиксированных Human Rights Watch 33 случаях, в которых речь идет о расправах без суда и следствия, пытках и исчезновениях людей.

И это при том, что во всех этих случаях было вынесено решение Европейского суда по правам человека.

“Россия исправно платит штрафы, а вот мер никаких не предпринимает”, – говорит Джилл. Хотя.

По словам Джилл, ситуация в России может измениться лишь в том случае, если “от российских властей будет исходить однозначный сигнал о том, что сотрудники неправительственных организаций не шпионы и не враги”.

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Belarus to fulfill all European security obligations – particularly regarding terrorism

Posted by Info on 30/09/2009

Ria Novosti: Minsk will fulfill all its European security obligations, Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko announced on Wednesday during an international conference in the country’s capital where around 50 delegations from the European Union, Commonwealth of Independent States, China, Mexico, and a number of international organizations were took part.

“Belarus’ common border with the European Union should foster good relations between nations and countries instead of dividing them.We are prepared to participate in joint projects with the EU in order to reinforce overall European security. Minsk would continue to concentrate on national border security particularly regarding terrorism.

“You know as well as I the challenges being set by criminals, especially terrorist organizations, and how much nuclear material is being traded. Even the largest countries are unable to cope alone,” Lukashenko said.

Minsk spends around $100 million annually on border security.

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Kazakhstan: Does Nazarbaev have right to run the life long? – Concept of “The leader of the nation” as he made a lot of good for country?

Posted by Info on 30/09/2009

CA News: According to first vice of “Nur Otan” party Darhan Kaletaev, President Nursultan Nazarbaev has the legal right to run the life long presidency:

The concept of “The leader of the nation” can not foresee the life long presidency because it will result in change of the Constitution. But I think that all juridical tools are reflected, in other words Nazarbaev has the right be the life-long President. There are amendments in the Constitution on how many times the President can run in presidential elections.”

While answering questions of journalists about “the need of separate amendments” Kaletaev said that ” the meaning of this law shall be reached during the discussion. We have all legal provisions, but nothing is perfect.“It will be decided whether it will be the separate law or an amendment to the current legislation.”

According to him, the law on the first president

“does not fully correspond to the reality in appreciation of the head of the country as the Leader. But I think that this law should speak for another criteria, for his constitutional status as the leader of the country who made a lot for good for the country’s prosperity and as the leader whose ideas shall be the basis for further development.”

Posted in Kazakhstan | 1 Comment »

What to expect from court hearing: Chechen President v. Director of Human Rights Group

Posted by Info on 30/09/2009

Russia Profile: The Defamation Hearing that Began on Friday May Become a Trial of the Way Ramzan Kadyrov Has Ruled Chechnya.

When Oleg Orlov, the director of the human rights group Memorial, publically blamed the Chechen President Ramzan Kadyrov for the murder of Natalia Estemirova, he was doing so after a string of murders of critics of the Chechen regime, including the deaths of Estemirova’s friends and colleagues Anna Politkovskaya (murdered in October of 2006) and Stanislav Markelov (shot in January this year).

Since this is a civil case, no one is on trial. But the defense team’s strategy of turning the hearing into a trial of Kadyrov’s competence – or “trying to start a discussion around the case, but not one of substance,” as Krasnenkov, the lawyer representing Kadyrov in court, complained to the judge – has quite momentous implications.

The defense began by calling several expert witnesses to testify about Kadyrov’s own strained relations with Estemirova (particularly the meeting at which Orlov claims Kadyrov “personally threatened her”), Orlov’s claim that normal human rights work in the republic is impossible, and, most importantly, on the situation of impunity. The cumulative effect is to turn the tables between the prosecution and the defense.  Tanya Lokshina, a representative of Human Rights Watch who was one of the witnesses to testify on Friday said:

One could extrapolate that it was not Orlov on trial, but Kadyrov. At least, that’s what several people in the audience told me afterward.

If Orlov wins, it means the court acknowledges that he has a solid factual basis to make such assumptions. That would be sort of a judicial/political condemnation of the way Kadyrov has ruled Chechnya.”

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Russia ignoring judgments by European Court of Human Rights on Chechnya

Posted by Info on 29/09/2009

The NY-based Human Rights Watch said not a single perpetrator had been brought to justice despite court judgments naming individuals directly involved in disappearances, extrajudicial executions, and torture.
The cases relate to violations during Russian military and intelligence operations in Chechnya from 1999 to 2004.

Beyond paying compensation and legal fees under the court’s rulings, Russia had failed to fully implement the judgments, ensure effective investigations and hold perpetrators accountable, the group said in a report.

“Full implementation is crucial to prevent abuses from recurring in Chechnya and in other parts of Russia’s troubled North Caucasus.”
“It carries perhaps the single most significant potential to produce lasting improvements in the human rights situation in this region.”

Russian officials were not available for comment.

The report identified Russia’s failure to provide access to criminal case files, delays in investigation and legal obstacles preventing investigators from accessing evidence held by Russian military or security services. Thei report said:

“In numerous judgments on cases from Chechnya, the European Court found that the Russian authorities failed to effectively investigate even very strong leads or evidence indicating official involvement in human rights violations.”

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US newspaper publisher barred from Kyrgyzstan because of his work in Belarus in 2005

Posted by Info on 29/09/2009

24 kg: An Indiana newspaper publisher was denied entry to the central Asian country of Kyrgyzstan.

Ronald, 60 has made 16 trips to nine former Soviet republics since 1998 to train journalists and to promote an independent press.

He arrived in Kyrgyzstan on Sunday. He obtained his visa at the airport but got no further than the passport control booth. He said authorities there searched a database list of names compiled by the Commonwealth of Independent States, a group of some former Soviet republics, and that his name came up. He was denied entry to the country after security officers questioned him about a 2005 trip he made to Belarus to train journalists.He was booked on the next available flight to London, and he returned home Monday.

Ronald said those on the list are considered “an enemy of the state, or you’re viewed as a potential threat.”

“If Belarus puts me on their list, that’s fine. It’s a reflection of my fine work there.”

During his time in Belarus, Ronald said he was denounced on state-run television as a propagandist for democracy and press freedoms, harassed by Immigration authorities, and followed by police.

Ronald also said Freedom House, a Washington, D.C., group that promotes freedom worldwide, and the New York-based Center to Protect Journalists would be notified of his deportation.

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Remarks by Dmitry Medvedev to the 64th UN General Assembly

Posted by Info on 28/09/2009

By Dmitry Medvedev: Mr President, Ladies and Gentlemen,

….At the morning session the President of the United States spoke and I would like to note an idea brought up by Mr Barack Obama who said that no country is able or should try to dominate others. This idea is absolutely correct. We should agree on common approaches which should be afterwards implemented via various mechanisms, including those of the UN.

…..more here

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Russia: Dutch journalist accused of breaking migration rules acquitted

Posted by Info on 28/09/2009

Caucasia Knot: The Supreme Court of Kabardino-Balkaria has acquitted Michel Krilaans, a journalist from Netherlands, chief-editor of the Moscow bureau of the NRZ newspaper, who was earlier accused of breaching the migration accounting regulations.

By decision of the Nalchik City Court, he was found guilty of breaking the rules of migration accounting, fined by 2000 roubles and awarded deportation out of Russia.

Mr Krilaans was detained in Nalchik on August 19 this year and brought to the Department of the Migration Service (DFMS) of the Russian Federation for Kabardino-Balkaria, where some correction was revealed in his migration card.

Mr Krilaans’ advocate, has submitted a certificate to the Court, evidencing that the correction in the journalist’s migration card was made by the DFMS of Moscow, confirming that Michel Krilaans was in the territory of Russia on legal grounds.

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Страсбург: вопрос о приостановлении полномочий российской делегации в ПАСЕ

Posted by Info on 28/09/2009

Radio Svoboda: В Страсбурге начинает работу осенняя сессия Парламентской Ассамблеи Совета Европы, на которой должен быть рассмотрен вопрос, в том числе, о приостановлении полномочий российской делегации в ПАСЕ.

Tребование о приостановлении полномочий российской делегации в ПАСЕ будет обсуждаться 1 октября. Сбор подписей под инициативой лишить Россию права голоса в ПАСЕ инициировала делегация Грузии. Ее поддержали многие парламентарии из стран Северной и Центральной Европы.

Россия разворачивает на территории Южной Осетии военную базу, охраняет границы отколовшегося от Грузии региона силами своих пограничников и никак не способствует возвращению беженцев-грузин в их дома на территории республики.

Совет Федерации и Государственная Дума уже приняли решение: в случае, если Россию действительно лишат права голоса, делегация покинет Страсбург и не вернется туда, пока полномочия не будут восстановлены.

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