The attacks against Memorial and its staff must stop

European Parliament adopted on 8 February a resolution calling for an immediate release of the Director of the Memorial Human Rights Centre in the Chechen Republic, Mr Oyub Titiev, who was detained on 9 January 2018 and subsequently indicted on trumped – up charges of illegal acquisition and possession of narcotics.

In its resolution the European Parliament urges the Russian authorities to ensure full respect for Mr Titiev’s human and legal rights, including access to a lawyer and medical care, to physical integrity and dignity, and to protection from judicial harassment, criminalisation and arbitrary arrest.
Following the adoption by the European Parliament of a resolution calling for an immediate release of the Director of the Memorial Human Rights Centre in the Chechen Republic, Mr Oyub Titiev, EP vice-president Heidi Hautala, who is responsible for the Sakharov Network, stated:

”The European Parliament awarded the 2009 Sakharov Prize to Memorial Human Rights Centre, as well as all other human rights defenders in Russia. In my official capacity, I will continue to monitor the situation of Memorial closely.

The European Parliament stands by Memorial. We are strongly committed to supporting those courageous individuals who risk their freedom and safety to promote rule of law and human rights in these very dangerous circumstances.

We must be clear that the case of Mr Titiev is yet another sign of the persecution and harassment suffered by human rights organisations in the North Caucasus region. Last month, the offices of Memorial in the neighbouring Republic of Ingushetia were a target of arson attack and an unknown arsonists set on fire a car belonging to Memorial’s local office in Dagestan. It is imperative that these attacks be immediately and effectively investigated.

The attacks against Memorial and its staff must stop.

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