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Week-ending 16 September 2011

posted 19 Sep 2011, 01:50 by Rights in Russia   [ updated 19 Sep 2011, 01:56 ]

Russia opposes OSCE over election monitors

Defendants' pre-trial detention ruled unlawful

Lebedev parole appeal dismissed

‘Dog food’ officer fined 

Police search offices of Tatar activists

Involvement of government bodies investigated

UK PM ‘raised human rights issues’ on visit 
Europe's top elections watchdog said 14/9 it wants to send a 260-member observer mission for the upcoming State Duma elections, but the Central Elections Commission retorted that the figure was too high. Ambassador Janez Lenarcic, the top OSCE official responsible for election monitoring said the number was not negotiable. (The Moscow Times, 15/9) 

Yukos affair 
Former Yukos CEO Mikhail Khodorkovsky and his business partner Platon Lebedev were illegally held in detention for six months during their trial last year, the Supreme Court ruled on 13/9. Khodorkovsky and Lebedev were serving previous prison sentences at the time, and the court ruled they should have been kept in jail, not pretrial detention. (The Moscow Times, 14/9) 

An Arkhangelsk regional court upheld the earlier denial of a parole petition by ex-Yukos executive Platon Lebedev, and his current appeal was again dismissed. (RIA Novosti, 16/9) 

The military 
Warrant officer Vyacheslav Gerzog who fed dog food instead of canned beef to conscripts in the Far East was found guilty of neglect and abuse of office and ordered to pay a fine of 202,000 rubles ($6,600) on 12/9. Major Igor Matveyev, the former officer who exposed the story, was jailed (9/9) for four years on unrelated charges. (The Moscow Times, 13/9) 

Police searched the apartments and office of leading Tatar activists in the city of Chally, Tatarstan. Rafis Kashapov, the leader of the NGO Tatar Public Center (TIU) in Chally, said on 15/9 that police arrived at his apartment around 7 a.m. and told him they had a search warrant for his apartment and the TIU office. (RFE / RL, 16/9) 

Estemirova murder investigation 
Investigators engaged in the murder of the Chechen rights defender Natalia Estemirova are checking the possible involvement of agents of local government in the crime, Alexander Cherkasov, a board member of the Memorial Human Rights Society, said on 14/9.(Caucasian Knot, 15/9) 

UK-Russia relations (Litvinenko affair)
British Prime Minister Cameron told parliament (14/9) he had raised a number of human-rights issues with the Russian authorities during his recent visit to Moscow. Cameron met with President Medvedev and Prime Minster Putin during his brief visit to the Russian capital. He also met a number of human-rights activists. (RIA Novosti, 14/9)
Rights in Russia,
19 Sep 2011, 01:53