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Rights Group of the Week: Committee for the Prevention of Torture

posted 6 Jun 2016, 09:36 by Rights in Russia   [ updated 6 Jun 2016, 09:58 ]
On 2 June 2016 the Presidential Human Rights Council announced that it was cancelling a planned meeting with Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov because the head of Chechnya said he could not 'guarantee the safety' of Igor Kalyapin, chair of the Committee for the Prevention of Torture. The Moscow Times, citing RBC, reported that Igor Kalyapin had planned to travel to Chechnya as part of the Human Rights Council's delegation. An unidentified source in the Presidential Human Rights Council told RBC, as cited by The Moscow Times: 'We got in touch with Kadyrov and he said that if the members of the Council are planning to visit the country with Kalyapin, he cannot ensure the security of the delegation.' Thereupon Mikhail Fedotov, chair of the Human Rights Council, decided not to proceed with the visit to Chechnya.

As The Moscow Times notes, the Committee for the Prevention of Torture 'is a prominent organization that monitors human rights violations in Chechnya and other regions. The activity of the Committee and its head have been repeatedly criticized by the Chechen authorities. Kalyapin and the offices of his NGO in Chechnya have been repeatedly attacked by unknown groups.'

In particular, the Committee for the Prevention of Torture has played a leading role in organizing and supporting the work of the Joint Mobile Group that monitors human rights violations in Chechnya. On 16 March 2016 when Igor Kalyapin, chair of the Committee, visited Chechnya he was assaulted by unidentified men. Law enforcement agencies subsequently initiated an investigation into the attack, but no criminal proceedings followed. On 3 June 2015, the offices of the Joint Mobile Group had been ransacked by a group of unidentified individuals. None of those responsible have been brought to justice.

Source:
'Russia's Human Rights Council Cancels Meeting With Kadyrov,' The Moscow Times, 2 June 2016
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