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Duma deputies submit draft legislation that would allow military personnel to be jailed without trial
State Duma deputies Andrey Kartopolov and Andrey Krasov introduced a draft bill that would, if it passes, allow military personnel to be jailed without a court ruling.
The legislation would give commanders of combat units and military garrison commandants the right to discipline military personnel, including by holding them in a stockade, or military prison. At the moment, only a military court can legally make the decision to send a service member to prison.
The list of offenses for which personnel could be jailed include: unauthorized abandonment of a military unit, failure to appear for service, evasion of military duties, intentional or unintentional destruction of military property, and many others. The maximum prison term proposed by the bill is 10 days.
Kartopolov and Krasov note that transporting delinquent service members to court requires a lot of time and resources, making it ineffective for maintaining military discipline during mobilization, martial law, and war.
According to the Telegram channel Voyenny Ombudsman, which posts about military service members’ legal rights, the draft bill violates Article 56 of the Russian constitution, which establishes that jailing someone without a court decision is possible only during states of emergency. The bill’s authors reference Article 55 of the constitution, which states that human rights and freedoms can be limited to “protect the foundations of constitutional order, ensure the defense of the country and the security of the state.”
After mobilization was announced in Russia, numerous instances of service members being held in detention without a court order have come to light.
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