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Situation for North Caucasian Prisoners Remains the Same

Submitted by on Friday, 24 December 2010.    1,399 views No Comment
Situation for North Caucasian Prisoners Remains the Same

According to the Human Rights Center “Memorial”, relatives of those serving sentences in penal colonies have been in touch with them recently to complain about the ongoing poor treatment.

In general, relatives of those who are convicted of involvement in an armed conflict make the calls. Most of them have complained about the fact that residents of the North Caucasian republics are being punished without any reason and almost all of them are kept in strict detention or in restricted premises. In both cases the convicted are deprived of rights such as the right to exchange letters, the right to visits, etc. There have been complaints that the convicted are being pressured physically by officers from the administration. In some colonies, officers from the power structures torture and beat the convicted. Usually when a terrorist act or other serious incident takes place in the country, conditions for the convicted residents of the North Caucasian republics worsens. For example, after the explosions in the Moscow subway on March 29, 2010 almost all Caucasian residents of the penal colonies were put under stricter watch or placed in more restricted areas.

Thus, people calling from Tomsk reported that the convict, Dzhamalai Ustarkhanov from the strict penal colony FBU IK-4 was being constantly pressed by the leaders of the colony. He was kept in strict lockdown all the time. A person from the village of Maima in the Republic of Altai said that Islam Akhmatukayev, a prisoner kept in FBU IK-1 was being pressed by the administration of that colony.

Also, a resident of the Pskov oblast called. He asked the human rights activists and journalists to pay attention to the strict penal colony known as FBU IK-6 (Pskov oblast’, Sebezhskiy district, urban village Sosnoviy Bor). Four residents of Ingushetia and Chechnya are being constantly pressed by the management there. The caller could only give their names: Muslim (kept under strict conditions of detention), Timur, Magomed and Khamzat (all three are kept in restricted areas). He reported that on December 18, 2010 officers of the colony chained Khamzat to the radiator and beat him up. According to the norms of international law, this can be qualified as torture. Moreover, those convicted who are Muslims are often given pork so they are forced to starve.

The penal colonies in the Russian occupied Chechnya face a similar situation to Russia. Violations have been recorded there as well. In August of 2010, prisoners of the Chernokozovo general penal colony refused to go out to form-up and riot squads (OMON) were called. As a result, the officers beat up most of the prisoners.

*Text was translated by Waynakh Online and edited by Michael Capobianco

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