Participants of the conference. Photo by Gor Alexanyan for the "Caucasian Knot"

31 October 2019, 11:18

Human rights defenders note threat of POC's commercialization in Southern Russia

Compositions of Public Oversight Commissions (POCs) for monitoring human rights in penitentiary institutions in Chechnya, Dagestan, Ingushetia, Adygea, the Rostov Region, and the Krasnodar Territory have been changed almost completely, and people who are far from human rights activities enter the POCs. It cannot be assumed that everyone who has joined the new POCs gets commercial benefits, but the trend towards commercialization of the activities of the POCs is becoming obvious, human rights defenders warn.

Well-known human rights organizations nominated their candidates to the POCs, but they were ignored, said Valery Borschyov, the co-chair of the Moscow Helsinki Group. He notes that the vast majority of new members of the POCs have no experience in protecting rights in penitentiary institutions.

Leonid Petrashis, the chairman of the POC for the Rostov Region, believes that the POC has become a commercial institution.

According to Valentin Gefter, Director of the Human Rights Institute, active members of the POCs fell out of favour after the Magnitsky case.

This article was originally published on the Russian page of 24/7 Internet agency ‘Caucasian Knot’ on October 31, 2019 at 05:04 am MSK. To access the full text of the article, click here.

Author: Gor Alexanyan; Source: CK correspondent

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