European court acts fast on Jehovah's Witnesses' report about torture


Jehovah's Witnesses in Russia, 27 February 2019

On 26 February 2019, the European Court of Human Rights (E.C.H.R.) ordered the government of Russia to immediately refer for medical examination 57-year-old Sergei Loginov, one of seven Surgutians who reported tortures in the building of the Investigative Committee. Sergei Loginov is the only one of these seven who is in custody.


According to the order of the Strasbourg court, the Russian government must send Sergei Logionov before 20 March 2019 for examination in a medical institution that is independent from the Investigative Committee and penal enforcement agencies for the purpose of examining his physical and psychological condition and also wounds allegedly suffered by him by tortures on 15 and 16 February 2019. Medical personnel must establish whether he requires treatment and whether his condition is compatible with being behind bars in the future. The conclusions prepared by independent doctors must reach the European court before 11 March 2019.


The complaint "Loginov and others v. Russia" was prepared and filed in the European court in the shortest possible time and its was assigned the number 10618/19.


Three believers were put behind bars in this case: Sergei Loginov, Evgeny Fedin, and Artur Severinchik. They are in the SIZO of the city of Nizhnevartovsk (Khanty-Mansi AO). No information has arrived to the effect that tortures were applied to Kvgeny Fedin and Artur Severinchik.


Widespread searches were conducted earlier in Surgut (Khanty-Mansi AO) and arrests were made of citizens suspected of professing the religion of Jehovah's Witnesses. At least seven persons reported that during interrogations in the building of the Investigative Committee they were subjected to beatings and tortures. A total of 20 local residents, including women, are defendants in this case. On 16 February 2019, a report reached the hot line of the Investigative Committee of Russia (S.K.R.) requesting that measures be taken because of reports about the torture of Sergei Loginov had been received.


Law enforcement mistakenly views citizens' religious confession as participation in the activity of an extremist organization, citing the decision of a court on liquidation and ban of the activity of organizations of Jehovah's Witnesses in Russia. (tr. by PDS, posted 27 February 2019)

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