The Committee on Legal Affairs and Human Rights notes that
the situation in the North Caucasus region, particularly in the
Chechen Republic, Ingushetia and Dagestan, constitutes the most
serious situation in the entire geographical area encompassed by
the Council of Europe in terms of human rights protection and the affirmation
of the rule of law.
In the Chechen Republic, the current authorities continue
to maintain a generalised climate of fear, notwithstanding the undeniable
successes in the sphere of reconstruction and the distinct improvement
of the region’s infrastructures, which had been laid to waste by
two cruel and devastating wars. Nevertheless, the human rights situation
and the functioning of justice and democratic institutions continue
to give cause for the gravest concern: successive disappearances
of the government’s opponents and human rights defenders still remain
widely unpunished and are not elucidated with due diligence.
In Ingushetia, constructive dialogue has been forged between
the authorities and civil society since the new president came to
power. It must nevertheless be pointed out that there has been a
worrying resurgence of violence since 2009, resulting in some cases
in assassinations and disappearances of opponents to the government
and journalists, without any prosecutions to date.
Dagestan has also recently experienced a resurgence of acts
of terrorism, prompting responses from the security forces that,
unfortunately, are not always lawful and productive. The admirable
tradition of peaceful secular cohabitation between Muslim, Christian
and Jewish communities founded on mutual tolerance could be jeopardised
by the rise of extremism and inappropriate responses from the authorities.
The committee notes that the European Court of Human Rights
has condemned the Russian Federation for serious human rights violations
in the region in over 150 judgments and stresses the importance
of the prompt and complete implementation of these judgments.
The committee is making a number of proposals aimed at putting
a stop to the impunity enjoyed by the perpetrators of human rights
violations and restoring the people’s trust in the law enforcement
agencies, without which it will not be possible to defeat the rise
of extremism and terrorism, which the Committee condemns in the
most resolute terms, expressing its solidarity with the victims
on all sides.