EURASIA LIFT

Human Rights Issues in Eurasia / Правовые Вопросы В Регионах Евразии

Archive for March, 2011

“Russia Without Putin” = Anti-Kremlin Rallies In Big Cities / “Strategy 31”

Posted by Info on 31/03/2011

Russian police detained dozens of anti-Kremlin protester s as they tried to demonstrate for the right to assemble on Triumph Square in central Moscow. Similar protests and detentions were reported in St. Petersburg and Nizhny Novgorod.

The protesters were heavily outnumbered by riot police. At least 54 of a group of more radical opposition members, led by Eduard Limonov and Sergei Udaltsov, were dragged away to police buses as revelers chanted “Shame” and “Freedom!”

The protest was one of a series of “Strategy 31” demonstrations organized for the 31st day of the month in reference to Article 31 in the Russian constitution that permits peaceful demonstrations.

“The police consistently break up these gatherings and don’t allow us to come together,” he said. “They arrest everyone, one after another. Listen to how the police carry on shouting while the people chant ‘Russia without Putin, Russia without Putin.'”

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Report On Torture and Arbitrary Detention in Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan to UN

Posted by Info on 31/03/2011

CIVICUS: Report On Torture and Arbitrary Detention in Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan to UN Special Mechanisms HERE

The 40-page report, a compilation of personal narratives and analysis presented as a briefing to United Nations Special Rapporteur on Torture entitled “Torture and Arbitrary Detention in Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan” identifies torture as a common practice in the Turkmen and Uzbek penal systems used to interrogate, punish alleged criminals of all varieties, silence perceived and actual dissent, or for no apparent reason. Long administrative detentions, medical malpractice, and other illegal activities often occur in conjunction with abuse.

The report, presented to the UN last week in Geneva, details 12 cases of specific abuse and examines the impact of the governments’ observed complicity in said abuse. It calls on UN special mechanisms to guide an independent investigation into the deaths, torture and arbitrary detention of Turkmen and Uzbek citizens.

Torture is often used to combat the perceived threat of dissent, said CIVICUS. People linked with the Andijan events of 2005 – when Uzbek government forces opened fire on protestors resulting in an international refugee crisis and hundreds of arrests – including innocent family members, are routinely detained, brought up on bogus charges and subjected to long years of bodily torture and psychological terror.

Posted in Turkmenistan, UN, Uzbekistan | 1 Comment »

Kazakh Opposition Publisher Missing After Attack

Posted by Info on 31/03/2011

Daniyar Moldashev is the director of a publishing house in Almaty that prints the opposition newspapers “Respublika” (The Republic) and “Golos respubliki” (The Voice of the Republic).

On March 25 Moldashev was severely beaten and robbed by unknown individuals on his way home from the Almaty airport. He was returning from Moscow where he had met with “Respublika” editors. The journalists said they believe Moldashev may have later been abducted.
Almaty police say it is too early to talk about an abduction as there is no evidence to prove Moldashev was kidnapped or that he is even missing.

“Respublika” had to move its headquarters to Moscow from Almaty several years ago after Kazakh authorities imposed restrictions on the newspaper.
“Golos respubliki” had to suspend operations due to pressure imposed by local authorities several times and some of its reporters have been attacked and beaten in the past.

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Lawyer Medvedev Warned Fighters In North Caucasus To Surrender or “Be Destroyed.”

Posted by Info on 31/03/2011

Mr. Medvedev noted with regret that the Islamist militant groups almost always responsible for suicide attacks and he ordered his security services to finish them off.“We need to do this and bring this work to an end.”
Russia has been battling Islamist separatists in the North Caucasus for nearly two decades, but violence in the region occurs almost daily, and attacks in Moscow and elsewhere are common.

Mr. Medvedev said Monday’s assault on the suspected terrorist base delivered “sufficiently impressive results.” as many were killed, even it is not yet know who was killed.
The operation, carried out in a wooded area of Ingushetia near the border with Chechnya, was remarkable in its scale and firepower. At least 17 suspected militants were killed when Russia’s air force bombarded the area.

“Among the dead militants there should be the leaders of militant groups,” Nikolai Sintsov, a spokesman for Russia’s National Anti-Terrorist Committee, said Tuesday. “At the moment, an investigation is under way to determine the identities of the dead criminals.

The Investigative Committee also released new details on Tuesday about two brothers arrested recently and charged with accompanying the suicide bomber in the Domodedovo attack.
“The presence of the explosive devices leads to the conclusion that they were preparing a terrorist attack.”

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Russia Hunt For Terrorists – Suspected Terrorist Turns Out To Be Missing Girl

Posted by Info on 31/03/2011

Moscow police were seeking a young woman who arrived in Moscow from west Siberia’s Surgut to carry out a terrorist attack. She was wanted on terrorism cahrges.

Siberian student, who arrived in Moscow earlier this week and wanted on terrorism charges, instead had been declared missing by her mother.
“Police started searching for Viktoria Syrbu after her mother declared her missing. Viktoria has never been wanted as a potential terrorist,” the source said.

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Uzbekistan: Freedom Of Religion Or Extremism? 20 Bookstores Closed

Posted by Info on 31/03/2011

Twenty bookstores in the Kitoblar dunyosi (World of Books) book trading center have been raided by Uzbek National Security Service (NSS) agents, police, tax officers, and representatives of the government Committee for Religious Affairs in the past week and closed.
However the bookstore owners were selling only books approved by the state.

The U.S. State Department’s 2010 report on religious freedom says that in Uzbekistan possession of literature by authors deemed to be extremists, or of any literature illegally imported or produced, may lead to arrest and prosecution.
The government categorically prohibits leaflets on the banned group Hizb ut-Tahrir and literature on Nur, a Turkish Muslim group deemed extremist.

Local human rights activists say authorities have intensified their already tight grip on religion in the wake of the recent antigovernment uprisings in the Middle East.

Employees in various sectors have reported they have come under pressure not to perform the five daily Muslim prayers, including Friday Prayers, during working hours. Women working in offices and markets have complained they are being told by employers not to wear the hijab, or Islamic head scarf.Officials have confirmed around 15,000 Bibles have been confiscated in the past year.

Human rights groups have criticized the authorities, saying many people have been labeled “extremists” and jailed for peacefully practicing their religion.

Police claimed they were on a counterterrorism operation and are preparing a criminal and administrative case against the Baptists.

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SCO! + UN? = Compromise of Human Rights Under Cover of Counter-Terrorism

Posted by Info on 30/03/2011

The Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), comprising six states with deeply troubling human rights records – China, the Russian Federation, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan – is increasingly embraced by the international community as a partner in countering terrorism and forging peace and security.

Report Terrorism and Human Rights: The Impact of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization released on March 30, 2011, Human Rights in China (HRIC) argues that the SCO’s counter-terrorism policies and practices undermine the effectiveness and integrity of the international counter-terrorism framework, and enable SCO member states to target their own populations through repressive measures that compromise internationally-recognized human.

· Non-compliance with UN standards. In adapting “Three Evils” doctrine –alleged separatist, extremist, and terrorist acts with its overbroad scope target legitimate expressions of political and religious beliefs.

· Violation of individual human rights protected under international law. Such practices as cooperative surveillance, a shared database and blacklists, guaranteed extraditions and denials of asylum, and ethnic and religious profiling, violate the right to privacy, principles of non-discrimination, non-refoulement, and protection of asylum seekers, and due process protections.

· Negative impact on the international counter-terrorism framework. The SCO has actively attempted to integrate its framework into that of the UN, as well as in other international fora. The UN and others have responded favorably and without critical review of SCO policies and practice.. full report HERE

Posted in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, others, Russia, SCO, Tajikistan, UN, Uzbekistan | Leave a Comment »

Terror Acts In Northern Caucasus In 2010

Posted by Info on 30/03/2011

In 2010, the count of terror acts, casualties and victims in Northern Caucasus went up – in total, 238 explosions and 15 terror acts with participation of suicide bombers were committed, that is, by 9 explosions and 1 terror act more than in 2009. In 2009, there were 92 casualties and 332 victims; in 2010 – 151 persons perished and 656 persons were wounded.

CHARTER HERE

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Россия: Газету Вновь Пытаются Уличить В “Экстремизме”

Posted by Info on 30/03/2011

Прокуратура Пермского края проводит проверку публикации в газете “За человека”, издаваемой Пермским региональным правозащитным центром, на наличие в журналистском материале признаков экстремизма.
Внимание правоохранителей обратилось на статью Романа Юшкова “Коми-Пермяцкий округ – начало партизанской войны?”, опубликованную в сентябрьском номере издания ПРПЦ за прошлый год.
Статья посвящена сложным взаимоотношениям местного русского и коми-пермяцкого населения с крепнущей на территории Коми-округа азербайджанской диаспорой, а также той роли, которую играют в этой ситуации местная власть и правоохранительные органы, передает Civitas.ru.
Для получения объективной оценки публикации прокуратура обратилась в Управление Роскомнадзора по Пермскому краю. Руководство Управления созвало научно-консультационный совет при своём ведомстве с тем, чтобы всесторонне оценить статью правозащитного издания. Членам совета было предложено решить, имеются ли в материале призывы, направленные на возбуждение расовой и национальной розни, пропаганда исключительности и превосходства человека по принципу его национальной принадлежности и др. Большинство экспертов, в число которых входят профессиональные лингвисты, чиновники Роскомнадзора, сотрудники силовых ведомств и др., сочли, что признаков экстремизма в статье Юшкова нет.

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Russians Demand “Third” Person As Country Goes Wrong Direction

Posted by Info on 30/03/2011

Russia needs ‘third man’ in 2012 polls
Russia’s leaders are increasingly mistrusted and there is a growing desire for an alternative to Prime Minister Vladimir Putin or President Dmitry Medvedev in 2012 polls.

People have not only stopped fearing a ‘third person’ but are beginning to wish for his emergence,.The most important change in the political consciousness of Russians over the last eight months consists not just of a fall of trust in the tandem and its participants but also a growth in demand for a ‘third’ person.”

The past year has seen an onset of a “political crisis” … The leaders have said that they will decide between themselves which one of them will run.
“Medvedev seems an unelectable figure” while Putin is gaining “anti-electorate” among not just the opposition but wider society that accuses him of acting in self-interest.

The ratings of President Medvedev an Prime Minister Putin have fallen to historic lows, and for the first time a majority of citizens believe that the country is moving in the wrong direction.
A significant fall in the president’s and prime minister’s ratings was noted last month – and they are continuing to decline.
Levada Center calls these results “a continuation of the trend that began last year” and links it to the continued rise in inflation, which is not compensated by a rise in wages, as well as people’s disappointment, and a lack of visible prospects. The slump in ratings could partly be explained by the growing political uncertainty regarding the 2012 election,.

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Kyrgyz Prosecutors Refuse to Investigate Torture Despite Evidence

Posted by Info on 30/03/2011

HRW: Kyrgyz authorities’ refusal to investigate torture allegations in a case to be reviewed by the Supreme Court on March 29, 2011, constitutes a serious violation of both Kyrgyz and international law.

Farrukh Gapirov, an ethnic Uzbek charged with involvement in the interethnic violence in Kyrgyzstan in the summer of 2010, was acquitted by the Osh Municipal Court, in southern Kyrgyzstan, because the court found that the main evidence against him – his confession – had been extracted under torture. Despite judicial instructions to investigate the use of torture, which were supported by photographic, video, and medical evidence presented at trial, the prosecutorial authorities in Osh refused to open a criminal investigation. Instead they appealed Gapirov’s acquittal to the provincial court, which upheld the acquittal, and then to the Supreme Court, which will review the acquittal on March 29.

“The authorities’ blatant dismissal of the court’s orders in this case, and their refusal to investigate the use of torture despite overwhelming evidence, is incomprehensible. It’s hard to imagine what more evidence could possibly be needed to get the authorities to investigate a torture case.” said Mr Solvang from Human Rights Watch.

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ECHR: Disappearance and Presumed Death of Chechen Man

Posted by Info on 30/03/2011

ON 29.3.2011 In Chamber judgment in the case Murtazovy v. Russia (application
no.11564/07)
the European Court of Human Rights held,
unanimously, that there had been:
A violation of Article 2 (right to life) of the European Convention on Human Rights
concerning the disappearance of the applicants’ close relative;
A violation of Article 2 of the Convention concerning the inadequate investigation into
his disappearance;
A violation of Article 3 (prohibition of inhuman or degrading treatment or
punishment)
concerning the applicants’ moral suffering;
A violation of Article 5 (right to liberty and security); and
A violation of Article 13 (right to an effective remedy).
The case concerned the applicants’ allegation that Ayub Murtazov was abducted and
killed by Russian servicemen during an unacknowledged security operation in November
2002 in the Chechen Republic.

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ECHR: Russia Must pay 1.3ml To 27 Inhabitants Of Chechnya

Posted by Info on 30/03/2011

Esmukhambetov and Others v. Russia (application no. 23445/03)
The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) has decided that Russia had to pay more than 1,3 million euros as compensation to the residents of Chechen republic, recognized by the court as aggrieved from the anti-terrorist operation in 1999.

In 1999, two Russian military planes raided the village, firing machine gun shots and dropping a number of bombs, resulting in the deaths of two children and three women. One of the applicants (Mr Esmukhambetov) witnessed the death of his two young sons and of his wife, the latter dying in his arms fatally wounded with shrapnel. The air raid also left approximately 30 houses destroyed or severely damaged. Many of the villagers left Kogi the same day, driving off to the nearby village of Kumli in Dagestan. The following day, the bodies of all the victims were buried and the administration of Kogi issued certificates in respect of each victim, stating that they had been killed during the bombing. When the villagers subsequently returned to Kogi to collect their belongings, they witnessed Russian federal servicemen demolishing further buildings. Most of the applicants did not return to Kogi after that; they spent the following winter in a refugee camp in Dagestan.

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ЕСПЧ Обязал Россию Выплатить 1,3 Млн Евро По Иску Чечни

Posted by Info on 30/03/2011

Европейский суд по правам человека (ЕСПЧ) постановил выплатить более 1,3 миллиона евро в качестве компенсации по обращению жителей Чеченской республики, признанных судом пострадавшими в результате проведения контртеррористической операции в 1999 году .- текст = РАПСИ/infosud.ru.

С исковым заявлением в ЕСПЧ в июле 2003 года обратились 27 жителей одного из населенных пунктов Шелковского района Чечни, по которому в сентябре 1999 года федеральными силами был нанесен авиаудар. Согласно документам, всего в населенном пункте на тот момент проживало порядка 30 семей, в результате бомбардировки погибло пять жителей, многие дома были разрушены.

Российская сторона объяснила инцидент проведением контртеррористической операции – по имевшейся информации в данном районе наблюдалась концентрация членов незаконных бандформирований. Кроме того, там была обнаружена база по подготовке террористов….

Позднее российский суд указал на законное право родственников погибших и пострадавших в результате боевых действий в Чеченской Республике на компенсацию в 20 тысяч рублей.

По мнению правительства РФ, истцы не исчерпали предоставленные им государством средства правовой защиты. ЕСПЧ, тем не менее, признал поданное заявление приемлемым и, рассмотрев его, присудил истцам в общей сложности более 1,3 миллиона евро в связи с нарушением ряда статей Европейской конвенции о защите прав человека.

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Documentary Movie: Torture- Everyday Reality In Chechnya

Posted by Info on 29/03/2011

Interview with Mantas Kvedaravicius the author of the documentary Movie BARZAKH
I lived for a year in Chechnya between 2007 and 2009 and shot the film then, at the time that Chechnya was still the “zone of counter-terrorist operation”. The whole territory was legally treated as if it were a hijacked building or airplane. Anyone could be taken from their home or from the street, properties and documents could be seized, and people arrested, frisked, checked-up, beaten or killed. Any conversation could be recorded or communication disallowed, and connection with outside world denied. Foreign journalists had to receive their short-term visit permission well in advance, and if they were granted it, they would be accompanied by state security services. So secret filming was the only way to bring out the other side of that reality, and it could be done only with the help of local people who managed to get me in and out of the “zone” and keep me safe, sometimes at great risk to themselves. Alas, during the time we were filming at least four people were either killed or disappeared. Amongst them was my friend Nataliya Estemirova, who helped enormously in this project, but was kidnapped and killed in summer 2009.

Torture is everyday reality in Chechnya… I was not interested in the production of certain truths where either the reasons or the motives of perpetrators are laid bare, or the traumas of victims are simply exposed to our voyeuristic gaze. Rather I was concerned to show how torture enters into everyday life; to inquire into its lingering power over a person. Simultaneously I was struck so many times by the extraordinary capacity of the human being to be able to live a dignified life after it had been destroyed by pain; by the absolute power of the state agents over the people. This helped me to understand that torture is not simply the painful event that endures for the rest of the one’s life, but the moment when the desire for life is itself killed in that person.…more HERE

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