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21 December 2016

posted 21 Dec 2016, 01:11 by Rights in Russia   [ updated 21 Dec 2016, 01:41 ]
Siberian Media Group Wins Case Against Russian Media Regulator Roskomnadzor

An independent media group in Russia's Siberia region has won a case against Russia's media regulator, Roskomnadzor. A court in Moscow on December 20 upheld an August 3 ruling by another court that a Roskomnadzor decision against the Europe Plus Tomsk radio station was illegal. Roskomnadzor had decided not to prolong the broadcasting license for Europe Plus Tomsk, which belongs to the TV-2 media group in the city of Tomsk in West Siberia. Europe Plus Tomsk radio is TV-2's last operating project. TV-2's Chief Editor Viktor Muchnik said the court's ruling is important not only for his media group but for all journalists in Russia. [...]
Source: RFE/RL [20 December 2016]

Russian Blogger Convicted, Imprisoned For Post Criticizing Syria Intervention
A Russian blogger has been convicted and imprisoned for a post harshly criticizing the government’s military operation in Syria that prosecutors say was sympathetic to terrorism. A court in the central Tyumen region on December 20 found Aleksei Kungurov guilty of "publicly justifying terrorism" for the blog post -- published shortly after Russia's intervention in Syria began last year -- and sentenced him to 2 1/2 years in a penal colony. The conviction is the latest in a series of prosecutions in Russia targeting bloggers and social media users in what rights watchdogs call an escalating crackdown on free speech online. [...]
Source: RFE/RL [20 December 2016]

UN General Assembly Approves Resolution On Russian Abuses In Crimea
The UN General Assembly has passed a resolution that recognizes Crimea as "temporarily occupied" by Russia and condemns the "abuses" and "discrimination" against Crimean Tatars, ethnic Ukrainians, and other groups on the peninsula. The General Assembly vote on December 19 was 70 in favor and 26 against the resolution, with 77 countries abstaining. The resolution also calls on Russia, as an "occupying power," to end all abuses against people living in Crimea, including arbitrary detentions, torture, and other "cruel, inhumane, or degrading treatment." [...]
Source: RFE/RL [20 December 2016]

Prison Service May Sue Russian Dissident Over Torture Claim

Russia's Federal Penitentiary Service (FSIN) could sue Russian dissident Ildar Dadin after he accused prison guards of carrying out systematic abuse, the TASS news agency reported Tuesday. Dadin could be sued for 500,000 rubles ($8,133) to cover the costs of a medical examination he requested in a bid to prove he was being tortured. The FSIN will decide whether or not to go through with the suit after they finish calculating their financial losses, said Valery Maksimenko, Deputy Director of the Penitentiary Service. Maksimenko denied all allegations made by Dadin, but admited that beatings and violence are a "common problem" in the prison system. A new group of private security officers has been created to respond more rapidly to reports of violence in the correctional system, he said. [...]
Source: The Moscow Times [20 December 2016]

Russia prepares new criminal charges as Crimean Tatar leader refuses to be silenced

Russia appears to be concocting yet another criminal prosecution against 59-year-old Crimean Tatar Mejlis leader Ilmi Umerov over statements expressing the same position on Russia’s occupation of Crimea as that set out in resolutions from the UN General Assembly, Council of Europe and all democratic countries. Umerov was summoned to the FSB investigator Igor Skripka on Dec 16 for a ‘pre-investigation check’. One of his lawyers Emil Kurbedinov later explainedthat Umerov had refused, as is his constitutional right, to give testimony, but that they expect new criminal proceedings to be brought. Kurbedinov calls this yet another example of how Russia’s laws against so-called extremism are in fact a weapon against dissidents. The new charges, if laid, will be because Umerov has remained unwavering in his opposition to Russian occupation and is not afraid to say so. The ‘investigator’ had wanted to question Umerov about a Skype interview he gave a Kyiv TV channel (17 Kanal) on Dec 12, 2015. [...]
Source: Human Rights in Ukraine [21 December 2016]




Not all relatives of persons killed in Grozny released from police

After the attacks on law enforcers, committed in Grozny, power agents detained dozens of relatives and friends of the attackers, relatives of detainees, who asked not to reveal their names, told the "Caucasian Knot" correspondent. The "Caucasian Knot" has reported that in the evening on December 17, the counterterrorist operation (CTO) regime was introduced in Grozny. Power agents reported that four militants had been killed in a shootout, and two others were hospitalized with gunshot wounds. In the afternoon on December 18, they blocked a private house in an outskirt of Grozny. According to power agents, three militants were killed there, and two others were detained. Thus, in total, during two days, seven militants were killed, and four others were detained, three of them were wounded. Four policemen were also killed; and one policeman was wounded. "On December 17, law enforcers took away parents, brothers and other close relatives of the attackers, including cousins on the maternal side. Yesterday (on December 18), at night, they released some of them, but close relatives are still at the police station; and we don't know when they'll be released," said a woman from Grozny. [...]
Source: Caucasian Knot [19 December 2016]
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