Human Rights Council asks for state protection to be given to Igor Kalyapin

posted 11 Jun 2015, 03:33 by Rights in Russia   [ updated 11 Jun 2015, 03:35 ]
5 June 2015

Source: (info
On 5 June 2015 the Presidential Human Rights Council sent a letter to the Ministry of Internal Affairs with a request to provide official protection to the well-known human rights defender Igor Kalyapin, chair of the Committee Against Torture, Vedomosti reports, citing the head of the Human Rights Council, Mikhail Fedotov. 

Fedotov said that the appeal was being made because the Grozny office of the Joint Mobile Group of the Committee Against Torture had twice been attacked in the last six months. 

Andrei Babushkin, a member of the Presidential Human Rights Council, added that this is the first time the Human Rights Council has appealed for protection to be provided to one of its members. 

"The fact that the Council is asking for one of its members to be given protection is a symbolic event, meaning that the human rights situation is very bad,” said human rights defender Pavel Chikov. 

The Human Rights Council will also send a letter to the Investigative Committee and the Prosecutor’s Office asking that they oversee the investigation into the attack on the Grozny office of the Committee Against Torture, Radio Svoboda reports. 

The attack on, and ransacking of, the office and apartment of the staff of the Joint Mobile Group of the Committee Against Torture in Grozny took place on 3 June 2015. The head of Chechnya, Ramzan Kadyrov, said that the human rights defenders ‘had themselves provoked the attack’. 

After the attack, all the documents and materials of the legal cases on which the Joint Mobile Group had been working disappeared from the office. 

On 13 December 2014 the office of the Joint Mobile Group in Grozny had been set on fire. A number of days before that, human rights defender Igor Kalyapin sent the Investigative Committee a demand that statements made by Kadyrov, who had promised to raze the homes of relatives of militants and deport them from Chechnya, should be investigated.