On 4 December 2008, the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) will rule on six cases from Chechnya, Russian Justice Initiative said today. The cases concern the disappearances of 6 men between May 2001 and February 2003 in different location in Chechnya.
Askharova v. Russia, (13566/02): On 18 May 2001 Russian federal forces conducted a sweep operation in Serzhen-Yurt and detained Sharani Askharov together with 8 other men. 6 of them were subsequently released. A 7th man was later found dead. Sharani and another man remain missing. Russian media reported at the time that Sharani was killed during the operation but the authorities later denied this.
Bersunkayeva v. Russia, (27233/03): On 13 June 2001 Russian federal forces entered a house in Urus-Martan and detained Artur Bersunkayev. His neighbours witnessed how Artur was forced into a military vehicles. He has not been seen since.
Akhmadova and Others v. Russia, (3026/03): On 6 March 2002 Musa Akhmadov was detained at a checkpoint by Russian military servicemen. The military prosecutor's office confirmed that Musa was handed over to the FSB in Khatuni. The following day, a serviceman told Musa's relatives that he had been transferred to Khankala, the main Russian military base in Chechnya. There has been no news of Musa's whereabouts since.
Musikhanova and Others v. Russia, (27243/03): On 9 November 2002 Russian military servicemen detained Vakhid Musikhanov at his home in Urus-Martan. Vakhid subsequently disappeared.
Ilyasova and Others v. Russia, (1895/04): On 15 November 2002, Russian military servicemen on APCs arrived at the applicants' house in Mesker-Yurt. The servicemen arrested Adam Ilyasov, who subsequently disappeared.
Tagirova and Others v. Russia, (20580/04): On 7 February 2003 Movsar Tagirov, a trainee Chechen police officer, was detained by Russian military servicemen at his family home in Urus-Martan. Movsar's father, himself a Chechen police officer, witnessed how the servicemen took away his son to a military vehicle parked nearby. Movsar has not been seen since then.
The applicants in the cases of Ilyasova, Tagirova, Akhmadova, Musikhanova and Askharova were assisted in bringing their applications to the ECHR by Russian Justice Initiative. In the case of Bersunkayeva, the applicants were assisted by lawyers from the Human Rights Centre "Memorial".
For more information:
In Moscow, Russia: Roemer Lemaître, +7 906 772 3632
In Nazran, Russia: Arsen Sakalov, +7 906 486 0753