Human Rights Issues in Eurasia / Правовые Вопросы В Регионах Евразии

Archive for November 4th, 2010

Capital Punishment Is Main Obstacle For Belarus-EU Cooperation

Posted by Info on 04/11/2010

Death penalty in Belarus remains the main obstacle for cooperation between the European Union and the country, Ronald Pofalla, Federal Minister for Special Affairs said.

“The main obstacle is death penalty. Death penalty is absolutely unacceptable. “One of the important parts of the rule of law state is an absence of death penalty,”
he continued adding that the capital punishment not only is remained in Belarus but also implemented.

Pofalla said that during his visit to Belarus he discussed the issue with candidates for the presidential post in the forthcoming elections and at least seven of them agreed to abolish capital punishment if they win in the polls.
Belarus will hold presidential elections on December 19. Eleven candidates have secured the required number of signatures (at least 100,000) to run for president.

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Moldovan Journalist On Trial For Espionage In Tiraspol

Posted by Info on 04/11/2010

Moldovan journalist Ernest Vardanean 34, went on trial for espionage in the separatist capital Tiraspol on 3th November. He was arrested on April 7 in Tiraspol on suspicion of spying for Moldova’s secret services. He was charged with high treason, a crime that carries a sentence of 12-20 years in prison in the self-styled Transdniester Republic.

Ernest Vardanean, who before his arrest had been tapped for a job as a Moldovan representative at the United Nations, was shown on Transdniester television while imprisoned confessing to being a Moldovan spy. His family and friends have said the confession was made under pressure.

On November 4, the family’s lawyer, Alexandru Postica was unable to travel to Tiraspol for “security reasons” and that the separatist authorities don’t recognize him as Vardanean’s legal representative. Irina Vardanean said the Tiraspol lawyer, who has been assigned to her husband’s case by the court, refused to talk to her after the court session because he said he was “busy.”

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Moscow To Give Chechen Residents $16 Mln In Compensation In 2010

Posted by Info on 04/11/2010

The Russian government will have allocated about 500 million rubles ($16.2 million) by the end of 2010 to compensate residents of Chechnya affected by anti-terrorism operations this year.

Each family who lost its home as a result of military operations against militants in the volatile North Caucasus republic will receive 350,000 rubles (about $11,400), Prime Minister Odes Baisultanov told Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov.

According to the Chechen government, about 75,000 people have received compensations for their lost property since 2003, including 8,000 families this year.

Moscow officially ended its decade-long antiterrorism campaign against separatists in Chechnya in April 2009, but has since had to step up the fight against militants as skirmishes and attacks on police and other officials have continued.

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Defining ‘Terrorism’ In The North Caucasus

Posted by Info on 04/11/2010

The Chechen authorities have taken conflicting interpretations of precisely what kind of attacks should be classified as “terrorism” under Russian law to refute recent criticism by the Russian Prosecutor-General’s Office of incidences of terrorism in the North Caucasus and the inability of local police to counter it.

On October 25 Russian Deputy Prosecutor-General Ivan Sydoruk said that the incidence of “extremist” crimes committed in the North Caucasus Federal District this year was four times higher than in 2009. He marked the number of “terrorist acts” committed in the North Caucasus Federal District this year at 13, and that of “crimes of a terrorist nature” at 352, of which he claimed 254 took place in Chechnya.

Kadyrov’s press service rejected the Prosecutor-General’s Office’s data outright, claiming that “not a single terrorist act was perpetrated and registered in Chechnya in the first nine months of this year” — even though Kadyrov himself, speaking on October 19, had characterized the August 29 attack on his home village of Tsentoroi as an act of terrorism.

Sydoruk’s statistical data on the worsening situation in the North Caucasus tallies with figures cited earlier this year by his boss, Prosecutor-General Yury Chaika. In April,Chaika said that 15 terrorist acts and 654 “crimes of a terrorist nature” were committed in Russia in 2009; of the latter category, 544, or 83 percent, took place in the North Caucasus.

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