Islam Gugov at a court session. Photo by Konstantin Volgin for the "Caucasian Knot"

06 February 2019, 08:44

Defence of KBR resident-returnee from Syria to challenge verdict at ECtHR

The decision of the Russia's Supreme Court (SC), which has refused to reconsider the verdict to Islam Gugov, a resident of the Kabardino-Balkarian Republic (KBR), who has voluntarily returned from Syria, will be appealed against at the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR), his advocate has stated.

The "Caucasian Knot" has reported that on October 15, 2018, the North-Caucasian District Military Court found Islam Gugov linked with militants and sentenced him to 16 years in a high-security colony. According to the prosecution, Gugov was trained in Syria in militants' camps.

The Gugov's case has become a precedent of law enforcers' ignoring the guarantees for voluntary returnees from the conflict in the Middle East, said Oleg Orlov, a member of the board of the Human Rights Centre "Memorial".

The SC's judgement will prevent people from returning from Syria and from the "forest", said Vladimir Malykhin, a member of the HRC "Memorial". "Without trust in law enforcement bodies, such a return is very problematic. This case is undermining trust," he has noted.

The SC's judgement partially puts an end to the work of the militants' adaptation commission, Valery Khatazhukov, the head of the KBR's HRC, believes. "Local authorities supported Gugov and promised to employ him," he said.

This article was originally published on the Russian page of 24/7 Internet agency ‘Caucasian Knot’ on February 5, 2019 at 09:00 pm MSK. To access the full text of the article, click here.

Author: Oleg Krasnov; Source: CK correspondent

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