Pre-trial prison. Photo: Fyodor Obmaikin/Yugopolis

03 August 2019, 15:56

Detainee's death raises problem of torture in Abkhazia

It is necessary to tighten the criminal liability for the use of torture by law enforcers, and record on video interrogations of detainees, Asida Shakryl, the Abkhaz Ombudsperson, has stated in connection with the resonant case of the death of the detainee, Anzor Tarba.

The "Caucasian Knot" has reported that after the death of Anzor Tarba, who was detained in Sukhumi, six employees of the Ministry of Internal Affairs (MIA) were suspected of exceeding their official powers. Four of them were put under house arrest, and two others are wanted.

The death of Anzor Tarba confirmed the information, which had been earlier received by the Ombudsperson's office, and stating that physical and psychological violence was used in places of detention, said a statement by the Ombudsperson, Asida Shakryl.

Calling to punish those guilty, the Ombudsperson also proposed amending the legislation of Abkhazia in order to prevent force interrogations. It is necessary, in accordance with international standards, to include the notion of "torture", as an independent crime, into the Criminal Code. Convicts for torture should be deprived of their right to occupy certain positions in law enforcement bodies for life, she has added.

Interrogations of suspects and defendants should be recorded on audio and video, while public oversight commissions (POCs) should be allowed to conduct regular inspections of places of detention, Ms Shakryl has stated.

This article was originally published on the Russian page of 24/7 Internet agency ‘Caucasian Knot’ on August 3, 2019 at 09:59 am MSK. To access the full text of the article, click here.

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