July 16, 2010 — Contents

FRIDAY JULY 16 CONTENTS

(1)  EDITORIAL:  Once Again, Russia comes in Dead Last

(2)  EDITORIAL:  Russia is a Nation of Drunken Murderers

(3)  A Country ruled by Amoebas

(4)  Kozlovsky, Under Siege

(5)  The Road to Russia is Paved with Good Intentions

NOTE: Part One and Part Two of a Hermitage Capital documentary on the Kremlin goons who murdered Sergei Magnitsky and continue their reign of terror in the service of Vladimir Putin have been posted online. Required viewing!  Also available in Russian, whose Part One already has nearly a quarter million views.

10 responses to “July 16, 2010 — Contents

  1. On July 15, 2010, one year after the murder of Natalia Estemirova, an employee of the Human Rights Centre (HRC) “Memorial”, a commemoration picket will be held at 5:30-6:30 p.m. at the monument to Griboedov
    (Chistye Prudy metro station). Then, at 7:00 p.m. a memory party will start at 12 Maly Karetny, in the HRC premises.

    Let us remind you that July 15 is one year after Estemirova’s kidnapping and murder. On July 8, the Independent Press Centre hosted a press conference on a theme “Inquiry into Natalia Estemirova’s murder: questions to the investigation”, during which it was noted that inspectors failed to answer the key questions on the murder of the rights defender.

    It is expected that at the memory party her friends and colleagues will tell about her last days and show Natasha’s photos of different years. After the official part everyone will be able to commemorate Natalia.

    http://www.eng.kavkaz-uzel.ru/articles/13819/

    • HRC “Memorial” reports about Kadyrov’s threats

      http://chechnya.eng.kavkaz-uzel.ru/articles/13795/

      “It turns out that Orlov (Chairman of the Board of the HRC “Memorial” Oleg Orlov, – comment of the “Caucasian Knot”) is a greater patriot of my republic than I am? Is he standing for my republic? I’ve lost everything. My relatives were killed. Be it Orlov, or a woman and a man from the Gudermes-based ‘Memorial’ or someone else… – what have they done for the republic? They receive large salaries from the West, and to report on their activities they write all sorts of muck and nonsense in the Internet. Therefore, they’re no opponents for me. They are enemies of the people, enemies of the law and enemies of the state,” said Kadyrov.

      The HRC “Memorial” also notes that the Kadyrov’s interview was a demonstration of infringement of women’s rights in Chechnya, as he openly approved shooting paint at women without headscarves. Human rights activists find these actions of unidentified persons to be lawless, while Kadyrov promised in his interview “to thank them officially” when he finds them.

      [one of the women caught without a headscarf lost an eye in a paintball attack, and posters on the public buildings warned that next time there will be “tougher measures” against them]

  2. Vital leads ‘ignored’ in Natalya Estemirova murder investigation

    One year on, many observers suspect cover-up over Russian human rights campaigner’s murder in Chechnya

    http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2010/jul/14/leads-ignored-natalya-estemirova-russia

    Investigators now say they have solved Estemirova’s murder, finding she was killed by a boyevik (rebel fighter) called Alkhazur Bashayev from Shalazhi village in central Chechnya. Bashayev was allegedly upset by reports Estemirova wrote about his armed group for the Russian human rights organisation Memorial, whose office she headed in Grozny.

    This theory rests on investigators’ claims earlier this year that they had found a rebel arms cache in Shalazhi including the pistol used in the killing, a car fitting descriptions of that used to kidnap Estemirova, part of a silencer in the boot of the car which fitted the pistol, and then the owner of the car, who said he had sold it to Bashayev.

    Bashayev – too conveniently, say critics – cannot be questioned because he was killed in a shootout with security forces last autumn.

    In fact, many observers suspect a cover-up. They think Estemirova, known to friends as Natasha, was killed for the reports she wrote on wayward law enforcement agencies – perhaps even those filed in the days before her death.

    One report described how officers in the police department of Chechnya’s Kurchaloy district had publicly executed Rizvan Albekov, an unarmed man suspected of helping the rebels, on 7 July.

    “Natasha must have struggled with her captors because investigators obtained DNA samples of three people from under her fingernails,” said Milashina. “Why have no samples been taken from the police officers in Kurchaloy for comparative study?”

    Critics say there are other glaring errors: Estemirova never visited Shalazhi or wrote about Bashayev; and investigators have not questioned any of the witnesses who saw her being kidnapped near her home in Grozny.

    • No surprises there, any Russian investigation of the murder of one of its outspoken critics was going to be a whitewash and cover-up.

      Particularly damning is the fact she never seems to have written about the “suspect”, and that they did not interview the eye witnesses.

    • @One report described how officers in the police department of Chechnya’s Kurchaloy district had publicly executed Rizvan Albekov, an unarmed man suspected of helping the rebels, on 7 July.

      On the same day at about midnight in Akhkinchu-Borzoi armed men in camouflage uniforms arrived. For a time they drove around the village, then they stopped in the centre of the village near a group of young people. There they pulled Rizvan Albekov out of the car. He was dressed only in underwear. The unidentified men asked Rizvan Albekov whether he had helped members of illegal armed groups. Rizvan Albekov replied in the negative (he shook his head). Then they shot him several times and told the others present that that would happen to anyone who helped members of illegal armed groups.

      http://www.rightsinrussia.info/home/hro-org-in-english-1/human-rights-defenders/estemirova

      In October 2000, Rizvan’s brother Vakhazhi Albekov was detained by Russian soldiers during a search for livestock and blown up in the woods near the village of Akhkinchu-Borzoi. Another brother, Ali Albekov, made an application to the European Court of Human Rights. On 9 October 2008 the European Court of Human Rights issued a judgment in the case of Albekov and Others v Russia in which it ruled in favour of the applicants. The applicant himself did not live to hear the Court’s judgment. He died of cancer.

      • @Albekov and Others v Russia

        At about 3pm the first applicant and another villager went to the military unit with a request to provide sappers who could check if the body had been mined. The military refused. Following the refusal of the military to help, the villagers recovered A’s body themselves.

        During the search for A, two villagers, B and C were injured by a mine in the forest. C managed to make contact with another villager in a passing car and raise the alarm. The military unit refused a further appeal for help and other villagers went to search for and rescue B. Whilst searching for B, two additional villagers, D and E, were also injured by mines. Each of them received serious injuries to their right legs, resulting in amputation.

        On the following day, the head of the village administration made a further appeal to the military unit to send sappers to find B and avoid further casualties. This time they sent 10 sappers, who had a map of the area, apparently showing the position of the mines. They used it to reach B who was by this time dead.

    • Medvedev said that he receives reports on the investigation regularly from the Investigation Committee of the Prosecutor General’s Office.

      “First of all, it is incorrect to claim there is no investigation, the investigation is in full swing,” he said. “Secondly, it is impossible to expect quick results in cases like this, unless a criminal is caught red-handed.”

      “Thirdly, the killer has been identified exactly, and the investigation is trying to spot the customer who ordered this grave crime.”

      http://www.itar-tass.com/eng/level2.html?NewsID=15321866&PageNum=0

  3. After the first slap in the face delivered by Yanukovych (describing Russian occupation and recognition of Georgian sovereign territory and recognition of separatist administrations as independent as a complete violation of international law) Yanukovich issues a second slap in the face….

    Yanukovych Appeals To Obama On Strategic Partnershi

    A foreign policy adviser to Viktor Yanukovych says he will deliver a letter to U.S. President Barack Obama written by the Ukrainian president that calls for a strategic partnership regardless of the broader geopolitical climate.

    Andriy Fialko was speaking at a panel discussion on July 13 on Ukraine’s future at the Brookings Institution, a Washington think tank. He said he planned to deliver the letter the following day.

    “I set myself an ambitious task — that the Ukrainian-American strategic partnership becomes a kind of a national consensus in both countries. That irrespective of who is in power, irrespective of what the geopolitical situation is, or the internal situation, this is a priority to be pursued in both countries by all political parties,” Andriy Fialko quoted from the letter.

    http://www.rferl.org/content/Yanukovych_Appeals_To_Obama_On_Strategic_Partnership/2099524.html

  4. Russia Far East grave held victims of Stalin purges

    Yesterday at 13:20 | Reuters

    VLADIVOSTOK, Russia, July 15 (Reuters) – Bones uncovered on the outskirts of Russia’s Pacific port of Vladivostok belong to hundreds of victims of Stalinist purges executed by the NKVD secret police, municipal officials and experts said on Thursday, July 15.

    Read more: http://www.kyivpost.com/news/russia/detail/73691/#ixzz0tqgl7eMw

  5. The ECHR case of Gelayevy v. Russia (application no. 20216/07).

    http://cmiskp.echr.coe.int/tkp197/viewhbkm.asp?sessionId=56895139&skin=hudoc-en&action=html&table=F69A27FD8FB86142BF01C1166DEA398649&key=83905&highlight=

    At about 9 a.m. on 27 February 2000 the men were taken to a building with a basement. There the witness and his fellow villagers were subjected to continued beatings by their abductors, who used shovels and iron pipes. At some point he fainted; he regained consciousness when two military servicemen were dragging him into a basement. In the basement he and all the other detainees from Gikalo, including Murad Gelayev, were stripped naked and subjected to another round of beatings with iron pipes and steel rods, and dogs were set on them. After that the villagers were allowed to put their clothes back on and were taken to Khankala in a Ural vehicle. There the detainees spent the night in the vehicle, handcuffed to a bar and being beaten by military servicemen.

    The vehicle took the detainees to the Oktyabrskiy VOVD, where the men were forced to stand against the wall and were subjected to beatings by shovels, bludgeons and steel rods. At about 12 p.m. a senior officer arrived at the site and personally kicked each detainee between the legs. After a short break a serviceman with a dog arrived and set the dog on the detainees. Then the detainees were ordered to run to the basement. In the basement they were ordered to take off their clothes; meanwhile Murad Gelayev and Mr Sul.S. were seated at a table and questioned. The applicant heard one of the guards ordering Murad Gelayev to put his hands on the table and hitting Murad’s fingers with a truncheon. Next the officer asked the other servicemen if they had a knife. He could not find one in the basement and went outside. Having found a knife, which looked like that of a hunter, he cut off Murad Gelayev’s ear, wrapped it in a bandage and put it in his pocket saying: “It’s a souvenir for me”. After that he cut Mr Sul.S.’s ear off and gave it to another officer saying: “And here is a souvenir for you”. The latter also put it in his pocket.

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