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Europe rights court orders Russia to compensate Chechen woman

[JURIST] The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) [official website] Friday ordered Russia to compensate a Chechen woman [opinion text; press release] for the disappearance and alleged killing of her husband in 2000. Applicant Asmart Magomedovna Baysayeva's husband disappeared on his way to work, a trip that took him through a checkpoint manned by the Russian military [official website, in Russian]. Despite Russian claims that her husband was not one of a number of checkpoint detainees, numerous witnesses told Baysayeva that they saw Russian soldiers taking him away. A masked man in a soldier uniform later contacted her and sold her an amateur video of Russian soldiers beating her husband and taking him to some abandoned buildings. It was later revealed that the prosecutor's office knew of this tape, but all investigations into the matter failed to identify those responsible and no charges were ever brought. The Russian government maintains that the investigation is ongoing, despite having been adjourned and reopened more than 12 times. In finding that Russia failed in its duty to protect Baysayeva's husband and to properly investigate his disappearance, ECHR awarded her approximately 52,000 Euros, as well as court costs.

Last month, following the release of a report [JURIST report] from the Council of Europe's European Committee for the Prevention of Torture and Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (CPT) [official website] calling on Russia to investigate such allegations [JURIST report], the president-elect of Russia's Chechen Republic [official website, in Russian] accused Russian authorities of torturing Chechen detainees [JURIST report]. MosNews has more. Reuters has additional coverage.

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Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

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