Zagidat Abakarova. Photo is provided by Idris Yusupov for the Caucasian Knot.

16 February 2018, 09:57

Zagidat Abakarova's sentence questions trust in authorities' guarantees

In Dagestan, the court has pronounced a verdict under the article, which was toughened after Zagidat Abakarova, who returned from Syria, had been taken into custody. This was told to the "Caucasian Knot" by lawyers.

The "Caucasian Knot" has reported that on February 15, the Soviet District Court of Makhachkala recognized Zagidat Abakarova as a member of an illegal armed formation (IAF) and sentenced her to eight years of imprisonment with a 13-year delay until her youngest child celebrates his 14th birthday.

Zagidat Abakarova signed an acknowledgement of guilt before her voluntary return from Syria. According to prosecutors, the woman's involvement in the IAF meant that she was engaged in cooking for her husband and other militants, washing clothes and maintaining cleanliness in the house where she lived with her husband.

On February 15, an advocate of Zagidat Abakarova told the "Caucasian Knot" correspondent that the case against his client might be considered under previous wording of Article 208 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation, which was valid at the time of the crime incriminated.

The advocate has explained that the previous version of Article 208 stipulated a softer punishment.

According to Ekaterina Sokiryanskaya, the director at the Conflict Analysis and Prevention Centre, the authorities want to show people the inevitability of punishment for joining a terrorist organization.

"However, there is a note to Article 208 on voluntary termination of participation in an IAF that exempts a person from criminal responsibility in the absence of other components of crime. And apparently, when women were returning from Iraq, the law enforcement bodies promised that the above note would be applied. If the state wants to be trusted, then the authorities should adhere to their statement and respect the law," Ekaterina Sokiryanskaya explained.

Full text of the article is available on the Russian page of 24/7 Internet agency ‘Caucasian Knot’.

Source: CK correspondent

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