Human Rights Issues in Eurasia / Правовые Вопросы В Регионах Евразии

Archive for July 31st, 2010

Kremlin Human Rights Advisor Quits Amidst Retrograde Rights Climate

Posted by Info on 31/07/2010

Ella Pamfilova, chairman of Russia’s presidential council on human rights resigned Friday in a move widely seen as a protest against the deteriorating rights situation in Russia.

Pamfilova, who chaired President Dmitry Medvedev’s council on human rights, oversaw the development of civil society, resigned amidst heavy fire from the Nashi nationalist youth group, as well as strong disagreement with Medvedev’s human rights policies.

The day before Pamfilova’s resignation, Medvedev signed legislation to strengthen the FSB, the KGB’s secret-service successor – a move Pamfilova’s council deemed the “rebirth of the unlawful and worst practices of a totalitarian state, with the goal of seeding fear and mistrust in the people.”

Pamfilova, it seems, saw no way to continue working for the Kremlin, which lends its full moral support to the Nashi youth group.
“As chairman of the council, unfortunately I do not know what to do about this, apart from speak out and say that this is an outrage. If these cynical guys who don’t care about anything, allow themselves anything, persecute people, because they know that adult men in high positions protect them, then that is terrible for the country.”

Human rights groups have expressed their deep regret at Pamfilova’s departure.

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Exposing British Complicity In Torture In UK Courts -Uzbekistan Confirms

Posted by Info on 31/07/2010

The Law Lords on thin ice. In seeking to justify its passive receipt — and its active solicitation — of torture-derived information, and its assertion that such material may be used operationally.

Human Rights Watch: France, Germany and the United Kingdom — pillars of the European Union and important allies in the fight against terrorism — demonstrate, through policy statements and practice, a willingness (even eagerness) to cooperate with foreign intelligence services in countries like Uzbekistan and Pakistan — notorious for abusive practices, both in general and against terrorism suspects in particular. They then use foreign torture information for intelligence and policing purposes … and, in some cases … [i]nformation tainted by torture abroad can end up as part of legal proceedings.

Dick Marty, a Swiss senator and a member of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, led an investigation into secret detention and rendition published two reports in June 2006 and June 2007, in which he concluded that there was “now enough evidence to state that secret detention facilities run by the CIA [existed] in Europe from 2003 to 2005, in particular in Poland and Romania,”.

In February 2010, the UN published a report was prepared by Manfred Nowak, the Special Rapporteur on torture … The report concluded that at least 40 countries, including the UK, Germany, Canada, Australia and Italy, were “complicit in the secret detention” of prisoners seized in the “War on Terror.”

Human Rights Watch to state that “[t]he complicity of UK agents in individual cases of abuse sends a damaging message to Pakistan and Uzbekistan that torture is acceptable in the context of interrogating terrorism suspects”…

The problem with the ruling is in the UK Lords’ inability to realize that they had failed to ensure that the use of torture is prevented at all times — lay with the notion that “the passive receipt and use of intelligence from countries with poor records on torture is in any way acceptable”
The Commons Foreign Affairs Committee focused in particular on claims made by Craig Murray, the former ambassador to Uzbekistan, who has stated (para. 14) that, when he informed his superiors that


The chief legal advisor in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office: “assured him that the Convention against Torture did not prohibit the receipt of information obtained under torture.”

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