19 January 2018, 15:39
EU condemns persecution of HRC "Memorial" in Northern Caucasus
The European Union (EU) has expressed deep concern over the detention and arrest of Oyub Titiev, the head of the HRC "Memorial" office in the Chechen Republic. This is said in the EU's statement "On Human Rights Violations against HRC 'Memorial' in Russia" dated January 18, which is available at the "Caucasian Knot".
"We are also concerned about reports about insufficient medical help to him and detention conditions in custody, which are incompatible with respect for human rights," says the statement.
The "Caucasian Knot" has reported that on January 11, the court ruled to place head of 'Memorial' Chechen office Oyub Titiev into custody for two months on charges of possessing marijuana. Titiev claims that the drug was planted on him by a law enforcer. He told his advocate that law enforcers had forced him into self-incrimination and threatened to bring criminal cases against his relatives on promoting terrorism.
The EU treats Titiev's arrest as "part of the alarming trend of arrests, attacks, intimidation and discrediting of independent journalists and rights defenders working in Chechnya."
"Among other cases that are part of this disturbing trend are cases of journalist Zhalaudi Geriev and the Chairman of the Assembly of Caucasian Nations Ruslan Kutaev, who faced drug-related doubtful charges," the statement has stressed.
According to the EU, another evidence of harassing human rights organizations in Northern Caucasus was the arson of the "Memorial"'s office committed on January 17 in the Republic of Ingushetia. "This attack must be fully investigated," the statement has emphasized.
On January 17, a fire broke out in the office of the HRC "Memorial" in Nazran. According to records from a video surveillance camera, the office was set on fire by two unidentified people. The rights defenders treated the attack on the office as a terror act.
Full text of the article is available on the Russian page of 24/7 Internet agency ‘Caucasian Knot’.