Lawyers of Joint Mobile Group Appeal to Law Enforcement Agencies

posted 22 Dec 2014, 02:43 by Rights in Russia   [ updated 22 Dec 2014, 02:52 ]
17 December 2014

Source: (info)
Lawyers of the Joint Mobile Group of human rights defenders working in the Republic of Chechnya have reported criminal attacks against them to the Ministry of Internal Affairs of both Russia and the Chechen Republic. The human rights defenders are asking the law enforcement agencies to investigate the fire at their office, as well as evidence of their harassment by unknown people in masks.

All the events took place on the same day, 13 December 2014, and the human rights defenders do not believe that they were random, writes the Committee Against Torture.

On 16 December, Sergei Babinets and Dmitry Dmitriev also appealed to the Investigative Committee of the Chechen Republic concerning illegal actions by police officers who held lawyers in their rented apartment for several hours on 14 December and confiscated all their equipment.

The human rights defenders are also calling for an official inquiry to be carried out regarding the investigator who was at the rented apartment that day and made no reaction to the police officers’ illegal actions.

His colleagues at the Investigative Committee initially refused to accept the crime report and, once they did, they still refused to issue a notification slip, pointing out that “a reported crime can only be registered with the authorisation of the commander”.

Hours spent waiting for this unnamed ‘commander’, however, proved to be in vain.

After this, the human rights defenders went to the Public Prosecutor’s Office and without any problems submitted a statement requesting that an investigation be carried out into the illegal actions of the police officers on 14 December 2014, as well as into the inaction of the investigator from the Investigative Committee who had failed to put a stop to the officers’ actions.

More details about the chronology of events unfolding around the human rights defenders from the Joint Mobile Group can be found on Igor Kalyapin’s blog on the website of the Presidential Human Rights Council.

Translated by Nicky Brown