Human rights situation in northern Caucasus must become an issue! New reports reveal the distressing situation in Dagestan, Chechnya and Ingushetia.

Petersburg Dialogue (November 14th to 17th, 2012):


The Society for Threatened Peoples sent an urgent appeal to the German Steering Committee of the Petersburg Dialogue to use the meeting in Moscow in mid-November to draw attention to the serious human rights violations in northern Caucasus. The human rights organization sent a new 40-page-long report to the committee members that focuses on the precarious situation in Dagestan, Chechnya and Ingushetia – and stressed that it is of great important for the victims of the crimes in northern Caucasus, that the Russian government is confronted with their legitimate complaints and criticism. The Steering Committee will also focus on the steep cuts on democracy and civil rights that occurred since President Vladimir Putin took office on May 7. 

"We urge you to repeatedly draw attention to the victims of state oppression and despotism in northern Caucasus when meeting with partners from Russia. Especially the Russian democrats, human rights activists and journalists – who often work on reports about the situation in northern Caucasus in spite of personal danger – will need your support, not to mention the courageous North Caucasus activists, who sometimes risk their lives by advocating on behalf of people who were abducted or tortured or on behalf of family members of murder victims," says the STP's letter to the Members of the Steering Committee.

The STP's new Human Rights Report describes the violence in Dagestan, Chechnya and Ingushetia and documents recent cases of serious human rights violations such as killings, abductions, torture in prisons and violence against women in Chechnya. In the summer months of July, August and September 2012 alone, 242 people were killed in the republics of northern Caucasus and 141 were wounded in attacks, robberies and gunfights. Dagestan reaches a sad first place with 147 dead and 57 wounded. Just recently, on October 30, an imam, his father and his brother were murdered. The Republic is at the verge of a civil war.

The Petersburg Dialogue between civil society groups from Germany and Russia was started in 2001 by the German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder and the Russian President Vladimir Putin. The forum connects representatives of the German and Russian civil society groups to exchange thoughts on various issues, including the situation of the civil society itself. The STP has been criticizing for years that concerns about basic human rights are not discussed appropriately.

You can dowload our report (in German) here.