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Torture by Police, Forced Disappearance

& Other Ill Treatment

In the early years of the 21st Century                                                              gvnet.com/torture/KyrgyzRepublic.htm

Kyrgyz Republic (Kyrgyzstan)

Kyrgyzstan is a poor, mountainous country with a predominantly agricultural economy. Cotton, tobacco, wool, and meat are the main agricultural products, although only tobacco and cotton are exported in any quantity. Industrial exports include gold, mercury, uranium, natural gas, and electricity.

The government and international financial institutions have been engaged in a comprehensive medium-term poverty reduction and economic growth strategy.  [The World Factbook, U.S.C.I.A. 2009]

Description: Description: Kyrgyzstan

CAUTION:  The following links have been culled from the web to illuminate the situation in the Kyrgyz Republic.  Some of these links may lead to websites that present allegations that are unsubstantiated or even false.  No attempt has been made to validate their authenticity or to verify their content.

*** ARCHIVES ***

Human Rights Watch World Report 2015 - Events of 2014

Human Rights Watch, 29 January 2015

www.hrw.org/world-report/2015/... or download PDF at  www.hrw.org/sites/default/files/wr2015_web.pdf

[accessed 18 March 2015]

KYRGYZSTAN

TORTURE - Although the government acknowledges that torture occurs in Kyrgyzstan, impunity for torture remains the norm. Criminal cases into allegations of ill-treatment or torture are rare, and investigations and trials are delayed or ineffective.

In its June concluding observations, the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child (CRC) expressed concern about “widespread torture and ill-treatment of children” in detention and closed institutions and called for prompt and effective independent investigations.

Video: Gay Kyrgyzstani men discuss their ‘abuse and torture’ by police

Nick Duffy, Pink News, 30 January 2014

www.pinknews.co.uk/2014/01/30/video-gay-kyrgyzstani-men-discuss-their-abuse-and-torture-by-police/

[accessed 2 Feb 2014]

A report published yesterday found that gay and bisexual men in Kyrgyzstan face blackmail, beatings, illegal detentions and even rape from the police force.

In the video, one man, Demetra, recounts how police arrested him and put a plastic bag over his head, before “abusing and torturing” him.   Another, Mikhail Kudryashov, was abducted by police, and was abused with a beer bottle and metal coat hangers.

Anna Kirey, a researcher for Human Rights Watch, said: “The police know these men have too much to lose if their friends or family or employers find out that they’re gay. They know that they can do it with impunity”.

Kyrgyzstan: Reports of Torture, Extortion by Police

Human Rights Watch, Bishkek, November 23, 2013

www.hrw.org/news/2013/11/22/kyrgyzstan-reports-torture-extortion-police

[accessed 23 Nov 2013]

When the police arrived, the officers immediately began to beat Marazykov, including on his broken leg, the lawyer said. When the ambulance came, the police accompanied Marazykov to a hospital but did not allow medical workers to treat him. Instead, they continued to beat him, apparently to coerce him to identify others who participated in the robbery, Marazykov’s lawyer said. The lawyer also told Human Rights Watch that it was only after Marazykov lost consciousness that the officers transferred him to a different hospital, where his leg was operated on.

The lawyer said Marazykov told her that on November 13, the day after his operation, police officers removed him from the hospital for questioning at the police station, where they beat him on the head and on his broken leg for about two hours to force him to answer their questions. Marazykov’s lawyer told Human Rights Watch that after police took him back to the hospital, doctors found he had suffered trauma to his head.

The state of the world's human rights

Amnesty International AI, Annual Report 2013

www.amnesty.org/en/region/kyrgyzstan/report-2013

[accessed 26 Jan 2014]

TORTURE AND OTHER ILL-TREATMENT

Torture and other ill-treatment persisted, despite the development of a comprehensive national programme on combating torture, based on the recommendations of the UN Special Rapporteur on torture, and the adoption of a law on the establishment of a National Centre for the Prevention of torture and other ill-treatment.

The Special Rapporteur reported in February that incidents of torture and other ill-treatment to extract confessions “remained widespread”. He further observed, “that, in practice, there is no clear procedure in place prescribing the measures to be taken by courts should evidence appear to have been obtained through torture or ill-treatment. Furthermore, in practice, there appears to be no instruction to the courts with regard to implementing that rule or ordering an immediate, impartial and effective investigation if the rule is violated.”

He noted that in contrast to the actions taken and statements made by the current and former Presidents and the Prosecutor General, he had not heard of any instructions “communicated by the responsible officials of the Ministry of the Interior [Ministry of Internal Affairs] to condemn torture and ill-treatment or to declare unambiguously that torture and ill-treatment by police officers would not be tolerated”.

Anna Ageeva, a pregnant 18-year-old woman, was detained by police officers in Bishkek on 11 September on suspicion of murder and held incommunicado for three days in Sverdlovsk District police station. During this time, she alleged that police officers dragged her by her hair, handcuffed her to a radiator and kicked and punched her in the stomach and kidneys to force her to confess to the murder of another young woman. A lawyer from the NGO Kylym Shamy submitted a complaint about the torture to the Sverdlovsk District Prosecutor. Three other suspects, including 17-year-old Aidiana Toktasunova, also detained in relation to the same murder, similarly complained to the District Prosecutor’s Office that police officers had tortured them to extract confessions. The Ministry of Internal Affairs dismissed the torture allegations as “absurd” and stated that their investigations had found no evidence of any wrong-doing by police officers. The District Prosecutor’s Office opened a criminal investigation into the allegations in October.

In November, the human rights organization Spravedlivost (Justice) wrote to the Prosecutor General requesting that she personally supervise an investigation into allegations that eight detainees in the centre for temporary detention (IVS) in Jalal-Abad had been ill-treated by over a dozen police officers. Spravedlivost had visited the IVS after being alerted to the violations by relatives of some of the detainees.

The detainees reported that police officers beat them in the face, skull and body. They stripped the detainees naked and forced them to run. The regional Ombudsman visited the IVS two days after Spravedlivost and met with all 42 detainees at the facility, 37 of whom confirmed that they had been ill-treated. In turn she asked the Regional Prosecutor’s Office to investigate these allegations. The Ministry of Internal Affairs also conducted an internal investigation, but claimed to have found no evidence of any ill-treatment.

While arbitrary arrests of mainly ethnic Uzbeks appeared to have become less frequent in 2012, reports persisted of serious human rights violations committed against Uzbeks in relation to ongoing investigations into the June 2010 violence and its aftermath, including torture and other ill-treatment in detention, forced confessions and unfair trials. In his February report, the Special Rapporteur on torture expressed his concerns that “serious human rights violations committed in the context of [these] investigations have continued unabated in recent months”

Conclusions and recommendations of the Committee against Torture

U.N. Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment  -- Doc. A/55/44, paras. 70-75 (1999)

www1.umn.edu/humanrts/cat/observations/kyrgyzstan1999.html

[accessed 2 March 2013]

4. Subjects of concern

74. The Committee expresses its concern about the following:

(a) The absence of a definition of torture as provided in article 1 of the Convention in the penal legislation currently in force in the State party, with the result that the specific offence of torture is not punishable by appropriate penalties as required by article 4, paragraph 2, of the Convention;

(b) The numerous and continuing reports of allegations of torture in breach of article 1 of the Convention; and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment (sometimes involving children) by law enforcement personnel, contrary to article 16 of the Convention;

(c) Although the State party has responded in some instances, there is an apparent failure generally to provide prompt, impartial and full investigation into allegations of torture and cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment, as well as a failure generally to prosecute, where appropriate, the alleged perpetrators;

(d) The insufficient guarantees for independence of the judiciary, particularly in respect of renewable-term appointments made by the President;

(e) The use of amnesty laws that might extend to torture in some cases.

5. Recommendations

75. The Committee recommends that:

(a) The State party amend its domestic penal law to include the crime of torture, consistent with the definition in article 1 of the Convention, and supported by an adequate penalty;

(b) In view of the numerous reports of allegations of torture and ill-treatment by law-enforcement personnel, the State party take all necessary effective steps to prevent these events from occurring;

(c) In order to ensure that the perpetrators of torture and ill-treatment do not enjoy impunity, the State party ensure the investigation and, where appropriate, the prosecution of all those accused of having committed such acts, and ensure that amnesty laws exclude torture from their reach;

(d) The State party continue its reforms in the police, prosecution and judicial institutions to ensure that each is sensitive to their obligations under the Convention; in particular, urgent steps should be taken to ensure the centrality and independence of the judiciary in the penal system, particularly with reference to limited renewable-term appointments, so as to bring them into line with the 1985 Basic Principles on the Independence of the Judiciary and the 1990 Guidelines on the Role of Prosecutors;

(e) The State party take measures to improve prison conditions, taking into account the 1955 Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners;

(f) Military places of detention and prisons be supervised to ensure that inmates are not maltreated and they, as should everyone, can be represented by counsel at their trials;

Kyrgyzstan: Investigate, Prosecute Police Abuse

Human Rights Watch, Berlin, 14 November 2012

www.hrw.org/news/2012/11/14/kyrgyzstan-investigate-prosecute-police-abuse

[accessed 3 February 2013]

A local human rights group, Spravedlivost (Justice), said eight detainees with whom they spoke at the temporary detention facility in Jalalabad alleged that on November 6, 2012, over a dozen police officers beat them and other inmates. In some cases the police stripped the detainees naked and humiliated them while searching for prohibited items such as mobile phones. During her own visit to the facility following the episode, the regional ombudsman told Human Rights Watch that she spoke with all 42 detainees in the facility at the time and that 37 of them alleged that they had been beaten by police on that day.

“Nothing can justify police stripping detainees naked and beating them,” said Hugh Williamson, Europe and Central Asia director at Human Rights Watch. “Searching for mobile phones, other personal effects, or any contraband prohibited in detention may never be a cover for abuse. The prosecutor general’s office should open a criminal investigation immediately.”

On November 13 Spravedlivost sent a letter to the prosecutor general asking her to personally oversee an investigation into the allegations, ensure that the eight detainees who came forward are not subject to further abuse, and  see that any law enforcement officers named by detainees are suspended pending a full investigation.

The letter states that police “brutally beat prisoners on the head, faces, in the kidneys.… [They] stripped [the detainees] naked and forced them to run. One of the prisoners said that officers strangled him.” The letter also states that police humiliated detainees during the search and highlighted the allegations of one of the detainees who said that an officer put a human waste bucket on his head.

Human Rights Reports » 2005 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices

U.S. Dept of State Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, March 8, 2006

www.state.gov/g/drl/rls/hrrpt/2005/61657.htm

[accessed 3 February 2013]

TORTURE AND OTHER CRUEL, INHUMAN, OR DEGRADING TREATMENT OR PUNISHMENT – The law prohibits such practices; however, police and SNB forces employed them. At times police beat detainees and prisoners to extract confessions. Conditions for pretrial detainees remained poor. In September the human rights ombudsman expressed concern over a number of incidents involving abuse of detainees, blaming the abuse on corruption and a low level of professionalism among jail and police officials.

On August 22, police Special Forces units beat 30 inmates in a pretrial facility in Karakol for up to 5 hours. A human rights nongovernmental organization (NGO) investigation concluded authorities carried out the beating to intimidate certain prisoners who had assumed a leadership role among inmates. Several prisoners sustained bodily injuries. One detainee announced a hunger strike and sutured his mouth to protest the assaults. An official investigation into the incident was ongoing at year's end.

On September 10, three minors in a pretrial facility near Voznesenovka village sewed their mouths shut to protest alleged abuse of other detainees by police special forces.

Also in September human rights activists reported that police beat 15-year-old Sukhrab Rakhmanov while he was in a pretrial facility in Jalalabad. Following complaints by human rights activists, authorities opened an investigation into the incident, but later closed the case after Rakhmanov's mother withdrew abuse charges against police officials. According to Spravedlivost, a human rights NGO in Jalalabad, the abuse charges were withdrawn under pressure from police and prosecutor's office officials. Rakhmanov remained in custody at year's end.

Freedom House Country Report - Political Rights: 5   Civil Liberties: 4   Status: Partly Free

2009 Edition

www.freedomhouse.org/report/freedom-world/2009/kyrgyzstan

[accessed 3 February 2013]

Despite the enactment of various reform measures, the judiciary is not independent and remains dominated by the executive branch. Corruption among judges, who are underpaid, is widespread. Defendants’ rights, including the presumption of innocence, are not always respected, and there are credible reports of violence against suspects during arrest and interrogation.

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Cite this webpage as: Patt, Prof. Martin, "Torture by Police, Forced Disappearance & Other Ill Treatment in the early years of the 21st Century- Kyrgyz Republic", http://gvnet.com/torture/KyrgyzRepublic.htm, [accessed <date>]

 

 

Torture in  [Kyrgyz Republic]  [other countries]
Human Trafficking in  [Kyrgyz Republic]  [other countries]
Street Children in  [Kyrgyz Republic]  [other countries]
Child Prostitution in  [Kyrgyz Republic]  [other countries]