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Persecution of Chechens Continue - Georgia's

Persecution of Chechens Continue - Georgia's "Tribute" to Russia

The representatives of Human Rights NGOs and mass media are concerned with the arbitrary detentions of Chechen refugees. On August 24, 2004 police detained three Chechens based on anonymous information according to which the Chechens had been in possession of weapons. Although this information had not been proven, Anzorov appeared to be unable to avoid Georgian justice and was imprisoned for hooliganism and putting up resistance to police forces. Anzorov, who had been beaten by the police is now in Tbilisi jail #1 serving three months of pre-detention. NGOs fear that Anzorov is in danger of being extradited to the Russian Federation. 

On August 24 patrol police detained Rustam Anzorov, Adam Baisuev and Islam Donaev based on anonymous information. Rustam Anzov is still in detention, while the two others have been released. According to Tariel Chochishvili, the detainee’s attorney, Anzorov was attacked by law-enforcers and was forcedly pulled out from the car all the while being threatened with a gun. Due to Anzorov’s Chechen identity, he neither understands Georgian nor does he speak Russian properly. Hence, he was unable to communicate with police forces. These language deficits resulted in considerable confusion and misunderstandings as the police did not manage to explain the reasons for his detention. In the following he was beaten and hit on the head with a gun several times to be taken to the Vake-Saburtalo police department, where, according to his attorney, policemen continued his beating and torture for an hour.

The alleged beating of Anzorov has been proven by an independent expertise given by Maia Nikoleishvili. The expertise concludes that the injuries and the bruises found on the detainee’s body have been caused by a hard object (objects). However, the scope of the damage is considered light. Nevertheless, this estimation may change after the examination by a neuropathist.

The next day Anzorov’s defense appealed to the Regional Court against the decision of Vake-Saburtalo Court, which had sentenced Anzorov to pre-detention on 27 August. According to Anzorovi’s attorney the complaint was to be sent to the Regional Court at once but for some uncertain reasons this process was dragged on and almost blocked. Its discussion was delayed and Anzorovi has to be considered an arbitrary detainee during this period. Finally, the trial, which confirmed the decision of three months pre-detention took place on 9 September.

It should also be noted that the above-mentioned case has been submitted to the Ministry of Security.” Hooliganism and especially resistance is beyond security’s competence. It is uncertain, under what reasons this case has been submitted to security – states Tariel Chochishvili and alleges that the police aimed at the detention of Anzorov. Gela Nikolaishvili (“Former  political prisoners – for human rights”) considers that it is not an isolated case of a Chechen’s extradition to the Federation of Russia and it islikely, that Anzorov may also be found among the extradited persons. Nana Kakabadze - head of “Former political prisoners – for human rights” reminds the authority of its obligations toward Chechen refugees. Having been granted the status of “refugee” by the Georgian government, they cannot be extradited to Russia. Despite this, the authorities of Georgia continues the persecution and oppression of Chechen refugees. Under the new authorities the number of extradited Chechens to Russia has already increased to up to seven.

Human Rights Information and Documentation Center is concerned about the frequent violation of Chechen’s rights living in Georgia under the status of “refugee.” Contrary to the obligations of protecting refugees, the authorities do not defend refugees’ rights and security sufficiently. Thereby the responsible authorities themselves are violating refugee rights and taking measures of punishment against them.
There are several cases that illustrate the pro-Russian politics of the new government toward Chechnya. Its victims often turn out to be innocent people.Among such cases are: the “Disappearance” of two Chechens, released from the court house in February of the current year, a special operation conducted in Pankisi Gorge (when 14 female refugees had been beaten and 19 male refugees detained) as well as numerous illegal detentions of Chechens.

Human Rights Information and Documentation Center urges the international community to take interest in issues regarding the defense of Chechens’ rights.


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