Muslims praying. Photo: REUTERS/Muhammad Hamed

20 February 2021, 08:32

Amid COVID-19, HRC "Memorial"* demands to protect Muslims' rights at funerals in KBR

The Human Rights Centre (HRC) "Memorial"* has appealed to the Prosecutor's Office of the Kabardino-Balkarian Republic (KBR) with a request to check information on the violation of the rights of relatives of the Muslims who died from COVID-19. KBR residents tell about burying the dead in closed coffins, without observing religious rites and traditions, the HRC's message says.

Since spring of 2020, in the KBR, Muslims who have died from coronavirus are buried in closed coffins. Medical institutions give out bodies to relatives in such coffins; it is not allowed to open them for traditional farewell to the deceased; employees of funeral services dressed in protective suits deliver them to cemeteries, the HRC "Memorial" has reported.

The HRC has drawn attention to the publication of the blogger of the "Caucasian Knot", who runs the blog entitled "Woman's View from Nalchik". In her post of January 27 "Unnecessary coffins for Muslims: burials continue under invalid recommendations", she noted that Muslims are forced to bury their relatives in coffins, demanding money for that. Some relatives doubt that they buried their relatives in closed coffins; others express dissatisfaction with the fact that they could not say farewell to their relatives.

The HRC "Memorial" has stressed that it hopes for a prompt reaction from the KBR's PO, after which "the unjustified infringement of the rights of the republic's residents to observe religious traditions will be stopped."

* the HRC "Memorial" is recognized in the Russian Federation as a foreign agent

This article was originally published on the Russian page of 24/7 Internet agency ‘Caucasian Knot’ on February 19, 2021 at 08:34 pm MSK. To access the full text of the article, click here.

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