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17 May 2017

posted 17 May 2017, 10:21 by Rights in Russia   [ updated 17 May 2017, 11:03 ]
Death Toll In Gas Blast In Russia's Volgograd Rises To Four
The death toll in a May 16 gas explosion in an apartment building in the southwestern Russian city of Volgograd has risen to four. Investigators said on May 17 that two bodies had been recovered from the debris overnight after the blast destroyed part of the building. [...]
Source: RFE/RL [17 May 2017]

Baku Decries Russian Court's Closure Of Azerbaijani Diaspora Group
Azerbaijani officials and legislators on May 16 decried a decision by Russia's Supreme Court to shut down a group representing more than 2 million Azerbaijanis living in Russia. Baku's foreign ministry called the ruling cancelling the registration of the All-Russia Azerbaijani Congress "discriminatory," while the Azerbaijani State Committee on Work with the Diaspora said it would ask for reconsideration of the ruling, which it said harms the "centuries-old friendly relations of our peoples." [...]
Source: RFE/RL [17 May 2017]

Russia demands increase to 12-year sentence against Crimean Tatar political prisoner
Russia’s prosecutor has lodged an appeal against the recent 12-year sentence passed on Crimean Tatar Ruslan Zeytullaev for unproven involvement in the Hizb ut-Tahrir movement which is legal in Ukraine and most countries. It seems that the FSB [Russian security service] are determined to get the 17-year sentence they need for their paperwork, however many ‘trials’ are required. Meanwhile the 31-year-old father of three is again on hunger strike in protest at the 12-year sentence and ongoing persecution of Crimean Tatars. [...]
Source: Human Rights in Ukraine [17 May 2017]

Telegram App to Refuse Russia's Data Demands
Russian Messenger Telegram Pledges to Protect Data Amid Rumors of Government Pressure
The company behind the messaging app Telegram has said it will not hand over information to the Russian state amid reports of government pressure to give up company data. "No other government or special service in the world has ever received any information from us.” the company said in a statement on Tuesday. "It will always be that way," Russia’s Vedomosti newspaper reported earlier that media watchdog§ Roskomnadzor had requested Telegram’s data so that it could be registered in a national database controlled by the state. [...]
Source: The Moscow Times [17 May 2017]

Russian government approves list of facilities protected by National Guard
MOSCOW, May 17 (RAPSI) – The government has approved a list of facilities which are subject to protection of the Russian National Guard. The relevant decree signed by Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev has been published on the official website of legal information. The list includes buildings of Russia’s Supreme Court, the Moscow City Court, the Supreme Court of Crimea and Sevastopol City Court. The National Guard is also ordered to protect facilities of the Prosecutor General’s Office, the Investigative Committee, the Foreign Ministry, election commissions of Russia’s subjects in Crimea, Sevastopol and Republic of Chechnya. Residence of Presidential Envoy to the North Caucasian Federal District has been also added to the protection list. [...]

Source: RAPSI [17 May 2017]

Russian Supreme Court upholds sentence for preparation of terror attack in cinema
MOSCOW, May 17 (RAPSI, Oleg Sivozhelezov) – The Supreme Court has upheld the sentence for fifteen persons found guilty of preparing terror attack in “Kirgizia” cinema located in Moscow, RAPSI learnt from the court’s press-service on Wednesday. The court’s Military Commission has dismissed an appeal filed against the sentences issued by the Moscow District Military Court on April 22, 2016. The ruling came into force. Earlier, the Moscow Prosecutor’s Office reported that in April 2016 several Russian citizens and one citizen of Uzbekistan received prison terms ranging from 11 to 13 years. [...]

Source: RAPSI [17 May 2017]

Bill on supervision of released criminals adopted by State Duma
MOSCOW, May 17 (RAPSI) – The State Duma passed in the third and final reading a bill envisaging post-prison supervision over criminals, who had served terms for serious crimes including terrorism and extremism. The bill was submitted to the lower house of parliament by the Russian government in December 2014. Under the draft law, compulsory administrative supervision would apply to individuals of majority age convicted of committing serious and particularly serious crimes of a terrorist and extremist nature, connected to infringement on life of law enforcement officers, public officials and persons executing justice or investigation, after their release. [...]
Source: RAPSI [17 May 2017]

Over 42,500 complaints lodged with Russian human rights ombudsman’s office in 2016
MOSCOW, May 17 (RAPSI, Lyudmila Klenko) – Office of Russia’s human rights ombudsman received more than 42,500 complaints from citizens in 2016, the country’s High Commissioner for Human Rights Tatyana Moskalkova said during her speech in the State Duma on Wednesday. According to Moskalkova, the number of applications increased by over 50 percent as compared to 2015. [...]
Source: RAPSI [17 May 2017]

French LGBT associations file lawsuit against Ramzan Kadyrov
Today, in connection with the information about harassment of gays in the Chechen Republic, three French LGBT associations have filed a lawsuit to the International Criminal Court against Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov. The "Caucasian Knot" has reported that on April 1, the newspaper "Novaya Gazeta" reported about mass detentions in Chechnya of men suspected of unconventional sexual orientation. Later, the newspaper "Novaya Gazeta" reported with reference to gays persecuted in Chechnya that in Argun, a "secret prison" had been arranged for people with unconventional sexual orientation. According to the "Radio Liberty", another similar prison, where members of sexual minorities are beaten and humiliated, is located in the Chechen village of Tsotsi-Yurt. [...]

Source: Caucasian Knot [16 May 2017]