17 May 2018, 17:25
Over 1100 people sign petition in defence of Chechen rights defender Oyub Titiev
Lana Estemirova, the daughter of the rights defender Natalia Estemirova, prepared a petition calling on the Russian president to transfer the criminal case of Oyub Titiev, the head of the Grozny office of the Human Rights Centre (HRC) "Memorial", for consideration at the federal level.
The "Caucasian Knot" has reported that on May 15, Lana Estemirova published a video appeal in support of Titiev, stating that the Russian president should interfere into the case.
Since January 11, Oyub Titiev is under arrest on charges of possessing marijuana. He insists that the drug had been planted on him by a law enforcer. No objective investigation is possible in Chechnya, Ilya Novikov, an advocate, believes.
Lana Estemirova also prepared a petition "Let's free human rights activist Oyub Titiev" and posted it on the "Change.org" Internet platform. As of 5:22 p.m. Moscow time on May 17, it was signed by 1117 users.
"We have no doubt that the case against Titiev was fabricated by Chechen authorities in order to squeeze the only organization that continued in recent years making public human rights violations and rendering legal help to victims out of the republic," said Lana Estemirova.
She asked the Russian president "to stop persecuting the HRC 'Memorial'."
Earlier, on May 14, 60 persons, including scientists and artists, wrote a letter to Vladimir Putin asking him to transfer the consideration of Oyub Titiev's case to the federal level. The head of Chechnya, Ramzan Kadyrov, has treated the letter as pressure on investigators.