09 September 2003, 17:32

Chechen human rights activists are going to boycott presidential election

At their meeting in the Ingush town of Nazran on September 7, representatives of Chechen NGOs declared they would not participate in the upcoming Chechen presidential election in any way.

About 70 representatives of Chechen human rights organizations and public figures attended this meeting. Three questions were on the agenda: "Is There A Choice on October 5 - Participation or Complicity?", "The Chechen Refugee Problem"; and "The Blacklist".

"If we succumb to the provocations connected with the election, we'd risk to become accomplices of the killing of our nation. We must also realize that we'd risk to legalize new punitive actions aimed to "introduce constitutional order", stated the key note speaker, Chechen National Rescue Committee Chairman Ruslan Badalov.

Madina Magomadova, the chairwoman of the Association "Chechen Mothers for Peace", is convinced that the world must hear about the situation in Chechnya and the Chechen NGOs' stance as soon as possible, before the issue is forgotten.

In discussing the current Chechen refugee problem, Imran Ezhiyev, the chairman of the Society for Russian-Chechen Friendship," said that normal living conditions had not as yet been created in Chechnya. "If they had, then all the refugees would have returned home by now," he thinks.

The meeting participants adopted a joint resolution at the end of the conference declaring that no one would act as an observer in the upcoming election and asked that all international organizations not do so either. Meanwhile, the monitoring of human rights violations will continue during the election.

The participants of the meeting also decided to ask the OSCE, the PACE and the UN Commission on Human Rights to create a forum on problems of the cessation of hostilities in Chechnya and get Chechen organizations' representatives to take part in it.

Source: Prague Watchdog

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