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May 2011

posted 7 Jun 2011, 01:39 by Rights in Russia   [ updated 7 Jun 2011, 02:16 ]
Tikhonov/Khasis trial
On 6/5 Moscow City Court sentenced Nikita Tikhonov to life imprisonment for the 2009 murder of lawyer Stanislav Markelov and Novaya gazeta journalist Anastasia Baburova; his accomplice, Evgeniya Khasis was given 18 years.
Hate killings
On 19/5 St Petersburg City Court convicted 12 of 14 members of a group of skinheads led by Aleksei Voevodin of the 2004 murder of ethnologist and human rights activist Nikolai Girenko and of a series of attacks on foreign nationals.
Kopeisk prison killings
On 27/5 Chelyabinsk Regional Court sentenced 8 prison officers to prison terms (one was jailed for nine years; seven for 10 years) for beating four prisoners to death at Kopeisk penal colony No. 1 in 2008. Ten others were given suspended sentences.
Politkovskaya killing
Rustam Makhmudov, accused of the 2006 killing of Anna Politkovskaya, was arrested by FSB and military forces at his home in Chechnya after returning there from Belgium, investigators said 31/5.
Sutyagin case
On 3/5 the European Court of Human Rights ruled that Igor Sutyagin, a former arms control researcher freed in a US spy swap last year, was detained for too long and denied a fair trial in 2004.
Khodorkovsky case
On 16/5 Mikhail Khodorkovsky's former cellmate, Aleksandr Kuchma, said prison authorities had forced him to attack Khodorkovsky and falsify a sexual harassment suit in 2006. On 24/5 Moscow City Court rejected an appeal by Khodorkovsky and Platon Lebedev against their December convictions, reducing the sentences by one year. That day Amnesty International recognized Khodorkovsky and Lebedev as prisoners of conscience (having refused to do so a few days before). The Russian Foreign Ministry denounced Amnesty’s decision. On 29/5 State-owned NTV television broadcast a prime-time report in which Khodorkovsky announced that he would seek parole, feeding speculation the Kremlin might release him. On 31/5 the European Court of Human Rights ruled Russia had violated Khodorkovsky’s rights during his first prosecution and trial from 2003.
Magnitsky affair
On 4/5 a Moscow court ordered the arrest of Ivan Cherkasov, a London-based partner at Hermitage Capital investment fund on charges of tax fraud at the request of investigator Oleg Silchenko. On 19/5 fourteen U.S. senators submitted a bipartisan bill to impose a visa ban and asset freeze on 60 officials (including Silchenko) implicated in the 2009 death in police custody of Hermitage lawyer Sergei Magnitsky.
Right of assembly
On 8/5 police arrested at least 20 activists protesting against the felling of Khimki forest, and charged them with holding an unsanctioned demonstration. Police arrested more than 30 people trying to hold two unauthorized gay rights demonstrations in central Moscow on 28/5. On 31/5 police detained more than 60 activists in Moscow and St. Petersburg at demonstrations protesting against restrictions on freedom of assembly.
Aleksei Navalny
On 10/5 the Investigative Committee reopened a fraud case against anti-corruption campaigner Aleksei Navalny. Navalny said (26/5) he has sued the Investigative Committee for failure to notify him of its decision. Meanwhile on 18/5 investigators ruled his website’s logo desecrated Russia's coat of arms; and pipeline monopoly Transneft said (20/5) it would fight a court ruling won by Navalny mandating it to release board meeting minutes.
North Caucasus
Amnesty International reported on 23/5 the investigation into the allegation of unlawful detention and torture of Islam Umarpashaev is facing obstruction from Chechen police. Memorial said on 26/5 that the body of Magomed-Ali Ilyasovich Ilyasov, a resident of Dagestan who disappeared on 20/4, was found on 23/4 with evidence of severe violence.
Rights in Russia,
7 Jun 2011, 02:16