Natrag Council of Europe anti-torture Committee returns to the North Caucasian region of the Russian Federation

A delegation of the Council of Europe's Committee for the Prevention of Torture and Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (CPT) carried out a visit to the North Caucasian region of the Russian Federation from 27 March to 3 April 2008. It was the CPT’s tenth visit to this part of the Federation since the year 2000.

During the visit, the Committee’s delegation examined for the first time the treatment of persons deprived of their liberty in the Republic of Kabardino-Balkaria; it also returned to the Republic of Ingushetia.

The delegation visited the following places of deprivation of liberty:

Republic of Kabardino-Balkaria

  •  Internal Affairs temporary detention facility (IVS), Nalchik
  •  Internal Affairs Division No. 1, Nalchik
  •  Internal Affairs Department for Combating Organised Crime (UBOP), Nalchik
  •  Pre-trial establishment (SIZO) No. 1, Nalchik

Republic of Ingushetia

  • IVS of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Ingushetia (which was undergoing renovation at the time of the visit), Nazran
  • Malgobek District IVS and Internal Affairs Division, Malgobek
  • Sunzha District IVS and Internal Affairs Division, Ordzhonikidzevskaya
  • Directorate of the Federal Security Service (FSB), Magas
  • Directorate of the Federal Drug Control Service (FSKN), Magas.

The delegation also had an opportunity to visit the site of the SIZO presently under construction, near Karabulak.

In Kabardino-Balkaria, the CPT’s delegation had discussions with representatives of the Republican Presidential Administration, Government and Parliament. In Ingushetia, the delegation had talks with senior officials of the Federal Security Service (FSB) at the Service’s Headquarters in Magas. In both Republics, the delegation met senior representatives of the Federal Service for the Execution of Sentences (FSIN).

The delegation held meetings with the Prosecutor of Kabardino-Balkaria, Oleg ZHARIKOV, and the Prosecutor of Ingushetia, Yuri TURYGIN, as well as with representatives of the Investigation Departments of the Investigation Committee, under the Russian Prosecutor General’s Office, in both Republics. Further, the delegation visited the Republican Forensic Medical Bureaux in Nalchik and Nazran.

In addition, the delegation had consultations with NGO representatives from “Memorial” Human Rights Centre, Human Rights Watch and Russian Justice Initiative, as well as with defence lawyers.

At the end of the visit, the delegation had discussions in Moscow with the Plenipotentiary Representative of the President of the Russian Federation in the Southern Federal District, Grigorii RAPOTA. During subsequent talks chaired by the Deputy Minister of Justice, Nikolay SAVCHENKO, the CPT’s delegation provided the Russian authorities with its preliminary observations.

The visit was carried out by the following members of the Committee:

  • Mauro PALMA, Head of delegation, President of the CPT (Italian)
  • Dan DERMENGIU (Romanian).

They were supported by Trevor STEVENS (Executive Secretary) and Johan FRIESTEDT of the CPT's Secretariat, and assisted by an expert, Eric SVANIDZE, a lawyer and former member of the Committee.

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