Complaints filed against Chechen police for inaction during NGO attack
The human rights NGO Committee Against Torture has filed several complaints with the Ministry of the Interior and the Investigative Committee following an attack on its offices in Grozny, Chechnya. The complaints concern police inaction. Igor Kalyapin, the head of the NGO, said that “despite our numerous reports to the police about the attack, the police failed to respond until everything was over.”
Kalyapin described the June 3 attack: “About 15 people wearing medical masks arrived in order to storm the office and the apartment [where the office is located]. They immediately started knocking down the door with sledgehammers, and all of this has been captured by our surveillance cameras.”
Kalyapin said that the Committee Against Torture will continue to operate in Chechnya, but its headquarters may relocate to another office. “Right now we are working on several dozen cases, our lawyers are partaking in criminal proceedings as representatives of victims. They have to work from here in order to evaluate crime scenes, to identify perpetrators,” said the head of the Committee.
On June 3, the office of the Committee Against Torture was attacked by several men wearing masks, who broke in and vandalized the premises. The employees escaped through the window. According to the NGO, no police were present at the scene during the attack.
After the incident, police in Chechnya said they had detained more than 30 people in connection with the attack.
Chechen leader Ramzan Kadyrov has speculated that the attackers were relatives of Dzhambulat Dadayev, the man recently killed by Stavropol police in Grozny, in a special operation that Kadyrov denounced as an infringement on Chechen autonomy.