Freedom House Applauds Resolution on North Caucasus | Freedom House

Freedom House Applauds Resolution on North Caucasus

Washington

Freedom House applauds yesterday’s unanimous approval of a resolution by the Council of Europe’s Parliamentary Assembly that criticizes Russia’s policy in the North Caucasus and urges Russian authorities to enact greater respect for fundamental rights and the tenets of the rule of law as it fights terrorism in the region.
 
The resolution commends Russia’s efforts to stabilize the North Caucasus through reconstruction in Chechnya and the growth of constructive dialogue with civil society in Ingushetia; however, it denounces the pervading climate of fear in Chechnya and an alarming upsurge of violence in Ingushetia and Dagestan. Four of the six members of the Russian delegation to the Council of Europe voted in favor of the resolution, with two abstaining, reflecting an unprecedented show of support for a resolution so critical of the country’s policies.
 
“Freedom House praises the Council of Europe’s Parliamentary Assembly for passing this important resolution and commends the Russian parliamentarians who supported it,” said Paula Schriefer, Freedom House director of advocacy. “We hope that this vote is not simply a dramatic exception to what has been an otherwise dismal record in acknowledging, let alone addressing, the human rights situation in the region.”
 
Local and international human rights groups have regularly accused Kadyrov’s militia of involvement in abductions, torture and extortion and several prominent activists have been killed in recent years. Russia also has the largest number of cases filed against it at the European Court of Human Rights with 862 total judgments against it, many of which are cases from the North Caucasus.
 
“Freedom House encourages the Council of Europe Committee of Ministers to closely monitor Russia’s commitments, explicitly manifested by the Duma delegation in its vote on the resolution, and hold it accountable for making positive changes in federal policy regarding the North Caucasus,” said Ella Asoyan, program officer at Freedom House and director of The American Committee for Peace in the Caucasus.
 
Russia is rated Not Free in Freedom of the World 2010, Freedom House’s survey of political right and civil liberties.
 
To learn more about Russia and the Caucuses, read:
 
 
 
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Freedom House is an independent watchdog organization that supports democratic change, monitors the status of freedom around the world, and advocates for democracy and human rights.

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