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23 July 2018

posted 23 Jul 2018, 14:18 by Rights in Russia   [ updated 23 Jul 2018, 14:39 ]
Russian Court Sends Terrorism Case Against Ukrainian Back For Additional Investigation
A court in Russia halted the trial of a 20-year-old Ukrainian man charged with abetting terrorism shortly after it got under way, sending the case back for additional investigation. Pavlo Hryb, who denies the charge and whose family contends he was set up by the Russian Federal Security Service (FSB), went on trial at the North Caucasus Regional Military Court in Rostov-on-Don on July 23. But the court said it found that the formal charge against Hryb was based on a clause of the Criminal Code that had not been in place at the time of the alleged crime. There was no indication that Hryb would be released from custody. [...]
Source: RFE/RL [23 July 2018]

Russian Lawyer Who Provided Prison-Beating Video Flees, Seeks State Protection
A lawyer who gave a Russian newspaper a video showing the brutal beating of a prison inmate has fled the country while seeking protection from state law enforcement authorities. The Public Verdict Foundation said on July 23 that Irina Biryukova, who is a lawyer with the NGO, left the country the day the video was published by the independent Novaya Gazeta last week. Biryukova has sent a letter to the head of the federal Investigative Committee, Aleksandr Bastrykin, urging the Russian authorities to provide security to provide for her safety and that of her family, Public Verdict said on Facebook. Amnesty International has also urged Russian authorities to "immediately protect" Biryukova. The 10-minute video, posted online by Novaya Gazeta on July 20, has shocked viewers inside and outside Russia and deepened concerns about allegations of torture in the country's jails, prisons, and police precincts. [...]
Source: RFE/RL [23 July 2018]

Russia: Lawyer covering torture case flees country after threats
Russian authorities must act immediately to protect Irina Biryukova, a lawyer who has fled the country after releasing a video showing her client Yevgeny Makarov being brutally beaten in a Russian prison, Amnesty International said today. On 20 July, Irina Biryukova made public a video showing 18 officials attacking Yevgeny Makarov in IK-1 penal colony in the Yaroslavl region of central Russia. According to Biryukova, her source inside the prison informed her that wardens were now plotting revenge against her, threatening her with physical harm. “Irina Biryukova’s brave decision to expose the appalling abuse within IK-1 penal colony is the latest example of her dedication to protecting others from torture and other ill-treatment. It is alarming that her act of courage has forced her to flee the country in fear,” said Marie Struthers, Amnesty International’s Director for Eastern Europe and Central Asia. [...]
Source: Amnesty International [23 July 2018]

6 Arrested in Wake of Leaked Russian Prison Torture Video
Six prison employees have been arrested and at least 17 fired following the release of a 2017 video showing a detainee being tortured at a prison outside Moscow. Investigators opened a criminal probe into the alleged torture of prisoner Yevgeny Makarov in Yaroslavl last week after a Russian newspaper released video footage of the 2017 incident. Public officials in Yaroslavl have come under fire for not investigating the incident until the release of the video, despite repeated formal complaints from Makarov. “The investigation has established the identity of all penal colony employees who participated in the beating of the prisoner. Today, six people have been detained,” the Yaroslavl branch of the Investigative Committee wrote on Monday. [...]
Source: The Moscow Times [23 July 2017]

Putin 'A Cold-Blooded Killer,' Says Kremlin Critic Browder
British-American investor and rights activist William Browder has said that he fears being extradited to Russia and killed in prison at the orders of Russian President Vladimir Putin. Browder spoke via Skype with Current Time TV's Anastasia Gorelova a week after he said Putin was seeking access to him in exchange for giving U.S. prosecutors the chance to question 12 Russian intelligence agents. Browder has advocated laws that authorize sanctions against human rights abusers in Russia, and was convicted in absentia in Russia on financial charges that he says are politically motivated. [...]
Source: RFE/RL [23 July 2018]

Russian prison wins libel lawsuit against newspaper and Pussy Riot member 
The Izmaylovsky District Court of Moscow has partially granted a libel lawsuit filed by the Nizhny Novgorod prison №2 against Sobesednik newspaper and member of the Pussy Riot group Maria Alyokhina, who wrote an article about the prison, the press-service of the court has told RAPSI. The article reportedly tells of inmates’ labor conditions in the Nizhny Novgorod female penal colony where the Pussy Riot member served her sentence. The court recovered 3,000 rubles ($48) from the newspaper and dismissed the rest of the demands. [...]
Source: RAPSI [23 July 2018]

800,000 Modern-Day Slaves Are Living in Russia, Report Says
Nearly 800,000 people live as modern-day slaves in Russia, working under conditions of forced labor, debt bondage and human trafficking, according to the 2018 Global Slavery Index, a worldwide analysis of slavery. There are 40.3 million people enslaved across the world, according to the 2018 Global Slavery Index compiled by the Australia-based Walk Free Foundation. The index documented several incidents of labor exploitation around stadium construction preceding Russia’s World Cup this summer. [...]

Source: The Moscow Times [23 July 2018]

Two Russian Police Officers Killed By Gunmen In Daghestan
Two police officers in the Kizilyurtovsky District of Russia's volatile Daghestan region were killed on July 20 when their patrol was attacked by gunmen, a police spokesman said. The Muslim-majority republic borders Chechnya, where Moscow has waged two wars against separatists since the Soviet Union broke up in 1991, and security forces there often face militant violence. "One was killed at the spot, another died in hospital when gunmen attacked the police patrol from a car," the spokesman said. The number of attackers was not known. [...]

Source: RFE/RL [21 July 2018]