Human Rights Issues in Eurasia / Правовые Вопросы В Регионах Евразии

Archive for November 14th, 2009

President Kadyrov’s Criminal Case Against Orlov, Human Rights Director of “Memorial” – investigation

Posted by Info on 14/11/2009

The interrogation of Oleg Orlov, head of the Human Rights Centre (HRC) “Memorial“, on the criminal case opened under the claim lodged by President of Chechnya Ramzan Kadyrov has been postponed till November 12 or 13 when Inspectors interrogated for the second time Svetlana Gannushkina, head of the Committee “Civil Assistance” who  said that she agreed with every word of Oleg Orlov, head of the Human Rights Centre (HRC) “Memorial“, who had imposed the political responsibility for the death of the human rights defender Natalia Estemirova on Chechen President Ramzan Kadyrov.

“I emphasized for several times to them that we absolutely agree and are in solidarity with him, because it is reasonable and justified.”

“Eventually, Ramzan Kadyrov and his retinue repeatedly gave interviews, in which they stated that they killed, that it was necessary to kill and that it was necessary to order to kill; and never either Kadyrov or Delimkhanov (Adam Delimkhanov – Deputy of the State Duma of the Russian Federation from the Chechen Republic and closest Ramzan Kadyrov’s associate, – comment of the “Caucasian Knot“) ever refuted these statements,” Svetlana Gannushkina has emphasizes.

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Tajikistan Adopting a New Code of Criminal Procedure

Posted by Info on 14/11/2009

The lower chamber of Tajik parliament approved the draft law on “Adoption and Enactment of the Code of Criminal Procedure” end of October 2009.To date, Tajikistan is guided by the Code of Criminal Procedure adopted back in 1961 is going to stay in effect until 2010 when the new Code will be enacted.

Nargis Zokirova, Director of the Bureau for Human Rights and Rule of Law, said “Unfortunately, we have not seen the latest version of the draft law discussed by MPs of the lower chamber. So, we are unable to give any assessment …” .

The new draft Code in chapter 9 and 10 reflects  towards torture – as rule of law in the event of criminal proceedings was expanded, and chapter 10 (2) states: “No participant of criminal proceedings can be a subject to violence, torture, or any other ill-treatment or treatment denigrating human dignity.” The law also stipulates that the arrested and the detainees have the right to appeal, and any judge’s ruling about release from custody shall be immediately executed.

Article 11 was also broadened to cover the issue of inviolability of a person. Particularly, the Article states “any arrest and involuntary putting persons to medical or educational institutions are only allowed on the basis of a court or a judge’s ruling.” The Article also stipulates that persons arrested or detained as suspects shall be kept in safe facilities where there is no harm to their health or life.

The draft Code adopted emphasizes independence of judges, and states they shall only be guided by the Constitution and law.

“There are quite many pluses in this version of the Code.  New Article 20 “Adversarial system and equality of parties” has been introduced to the Code of Criminal Procedure, which emphasizes that prosecution and defence are equal, i.e., they are given equal opportunities to assert their position under the Constitution and the Code. This is what our courts were missing – there were virtually no judgments of acquittals, and judges being directed by investigators and prosecutors do not take into consideration evidence and arguments put forward by attorneys.”

Human rights defender Olim Faiziev points out that the new Code has a new paragraph about the right of journalists to make written and dictaphone records during open court sessions. “Unfortunately, taking pictures, camera recording, or taking on a video are only allowed with the consent of the chief judge and the parties, which most likely means that these acts would be excluded just as in former times.”….more here

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Students Wanted To Study – Now They Are On Black List With Five-Year Travel Ban

Posted by Info on 14/11/2009

Students prevented from studying at the American University of Central Asia (AUCA) in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, and later prohibited from traveling to the American University of Bulgaria, reportedly have been placed on a five-year travel blacklist.

Three male students attempted to leave Turkmenistan through the Farap border crossing on the Turkmen-Uzbek border. In preventing the trio from leaving Turkmenistan, border guards reportedly explained; «Once you’ve been included on this list, you can’t go anywhere for a minimum of 5-7 years. That’s the rule.»

Resentment at the arbitrary ban on study at AUCA is growing among the students who aspire to study abroad. «Obviously, I won’t have a higher education now, but I’ve already learned some lessons. Until there is real change in the political system, there will be a growing number of wrongfully accused people like me [staying at home],»  student was  saying on November 12.

The study-abroad plans of as many as 1,500 Turkmen scholars were interrupted by changes instituted by the Turkmen government in July. Ultimately, many study-abroad students were able to begin their studies outside of Turkmenistan. But officials refused to permit the bulk of those wishing to study at AUCA to depart. Ashgabat has provided no public explanation for its decision

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Tajik National – He Prefers Guantanamo To Returning Home

Posted by Info on 14/11/2009

Tajik citizen Umar Abdullaev, who’s been held at the U.S. detention facility at Guantanamo Bay for nearly eight years, says he’s in no hurry to be released — if it means returning to his homeland. U.S.-based lawyer Matthew O’Hara, who represents Abdullaev said:

“He’s afraid that the threats that were made to him by agents of the Tajik military and the Tajik Interior Ministry…will be carried out. And those threats were that they would throw him in prison, they would torture him, and they might even get rid of him.”

Abdullaev’s concerns for his personal safety are so serious, O’Hara says, that his client has made a startling decision.

“He has told me on many occasions that while, of course, he wants to win his freedom, he’s so afraid, so concerned about returning to Tajikistan,” O’Hara says, that he would rather remain in Guantanamo in prison than go back to Tajikistan.”

Abdullaev is among the handful of Tajik citizens who were captured in either Afghanistan or Pakistan and handed over to the U.S. military for incarceration at Guantanamo Bay as terrorist suspects. Of the 11 Tajik nationals sent to the detention facility in Cuba, Abdullaev is the last remaining detainee.

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