Demonstration in Support of Gataev Couple
Local sources have reported that a demonstration in support of the Gataev couple was held in front of the Lithuanian Embassy in Finland’s capital, Helsinki.
According to the report, on April 5, a group of Chechen refugees and Finnish citizens organized the demonstration in response to a search warrant issued by a Lithuanian court on March 30 for Chechen human rights activist Khadizhat Gataeva (nicknamed the “Angel of Grozny”) and her husband, Malik Gataev. The protesters also complained that the children’s SOS-village managers did not allow the Gataevs to speak on the phone with their six children in their native Chechen language. They argue that the village director switches to speakerphone and insists that they speak Russian.
The protesters held posters proclaiming things like “KGB=VSD” (VSD: Lithuanian State Security Department), “Stop the Persecution of Chechen Refugees in Europe!”, “Stop Playing Children!”, “All children have the right to know their mother language, their culture and traditions!”, “Assimilation is Banned in Europe!”, “Chechen Children Should Be Raised in Chechen Families!” and “Mr. Mezhis, Stop Making Business on Children!” (Mr. Mezhis: Danius Mezhis is the director of the children’s SOS-village in Lithuania).
*Text was written by Waynakh Online and edited by Michael Capobianco