Zhalaudi Geriev. Photo from Geriev's Facebook page, www.facebook.ru

13 September 2016, 22:50

Signatures being collected online for fair consideration of Geriev's case

The initiative group of friends of the journalist of the "Caucasian Knot" Zhalaudi Geriev, sentenced to three years in prison on charges of illegal drug possession, has initiated the collection of signatures to the petition posted on the "Change.org" open civil platform.

The"Caucasian Knot" has reported that Zhalaudi Geriev was sentenced to three years in colony on charges of marijuana possession. Geriev made a confession to investigators under pressure and retracted testimonies at the trial. The defence appealed against the sentence, pointing to numerous falsifications in case files, the apparent contradictions in the prosecution's version and involvement of "hired regular witnesses" by policemen.

The petition posted on the "Change.org" platform is addressed to state authorities, investigating and supervisory bodies and aims to create the conditions for a fair trial at the appellate trial of the journalist.

As of 10:50 p.m. Moscow time on September 13, the petition was signed by 432 people.

"Prior to appointment of the date of the appellate trial, we plan to collect 10,000 signatures, after which the petition will be sent by us and the 'Change.org' platform itself to state bodies, Russian Ombudsperson, Supreme Court, and investigating and supervisory bodies," an activist of the initiative group told the "Caucasian Knot" correspondent.

Friends of journalist Geriev do not believe in the charges against him and are convinced of his innocence, Maria Vyatchina, one of the initiators of the petition, told the "Caucasian Knot" correspondent.

Earlier, the Human Rights Watch (HRW) called Geriev "a victim to his professional activities." The Human Rights Centre (HRC) "Memorial" has stated that Geriev was deprived of his liberty for the performance of his professional duties and promised to recognize him as a political prisoner.

Full text of the article is available on the Russian page of 24/7 Internet agency ‘Caucasian Knot’.

Author: Magomed Tuayev Source: CK correspondent

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