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09 March 2024, 23:58

Authors of appeal to KBR head link end of pressure with publicity

The Prosecutor's Office (PO) of the Kabardino-Balkarian Republic (KBR) has failed to react to human rights defenders' appeals demanding to stop putting pressure on the activists who had opposed the persecution of scientists from the Institute for Humanitarian Studies; however, there were no new attempts to dismiss scientists or interrogate activists. The signatories of the appeal to the head of the republic have attributed this to the fact that the situation received a wide resonance, but, in their opinion, there are no guarantees that the pressure will not resume.

The "Caucasian Knot" has reported that the human rights defenders and activists, who spoke out in support of the above Institute, were summoned by law enforcers for explanations about spreading slander; this was reported on November 22, 2023, by the Kabardino-Balkarian Regional Human Rights Centre. One of the signatories of the above appeal to Kazbek Kokov, the head of the KBR, was Azamat Shormanov, an activist. On December 14, he reported that law enforcers had demanded from him to appear to give an explanation about his appeal to Kokov about pressure on activists.

The KBR's PO has never responded to the application about pressure from employees of the Centre for Combating Extremism (Centre "E") of the local Ministry of Internal Affairs (MIA), Azamat Shormanov has added.

According to his version, the public outcry due to pressure on the scientists of the above Institute has played its role. "Local officials are very sensitive to such public attention, and this, it seems to me, is greatly affecting their activities," he has concluded.

However, in the opinion of Zaur Shokuev, a human rights defender, the recent public resonance does not always help in achieving justice.

"So far, none of the employees have been charged. I cannot state with confidence to what extent authorities have revised or changed their position. There is no guarantee that pressure will not resume at any moment," he has noted.

This article was originally published on the Russian page of 24/7 Internet agency ‘Caucasian Knot’ on March 9, 2024 at 00:06 am MSK. To access the full text of the article, click here.

Author: Roman Kuzhev Source: СK correspondent

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