Staunton, March 8 – The mistreatment of Zarifa Sautiyeva, whose detention was extended by three months at a closed door session of a Stavropol court and who has been denied visits by relatives, and new arrests of Ingush who took part in the March 2019 demonstrations suggest that the authorities now have carte blanche to do whatever they want, lawyers say.
The courts where Ingush cases are being held are violating their own rules to hide the lack of evidence for the charges they are considering and the siloviki are arresting more people to try to suggest that there was a conspiracy when in fact there isn’t one, lawyer Bilan Dzugayev says (ekhokavkaza.com/a/30475958.html).
Seven more participants in that protest have been arrested in the last month alone, he says; and the fact that the courts in the North Caucasus have been able to try and sentence 22 activists up to now proves that there are no special circumstances that could justify the draconian approach they have adopted with respect to Sautiyeva.
The only “special circumstances” are that the powers that be in Moscow and Magas believe that by such actions they can intimidate the Ingush into quiescence. They may be correct in that judgment with regard to some but for many others such behavior by officials is destroying any respect for the authorities and opening the way to more assertive actions by the people.
The latest example f an arrest for participation in the March 2019 protests came last night when the siloviki seized Zaurbek Dzaurov in Magas and then immediately transferred him incommunicado to a jail in Nalchik in neighboring Kabardino-Balkaria (kavkaz-uzel.eu/articles/346825/).