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Europe rights court holds Russia responsible for Chechen deaths

[JURIST] The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) [official website] issued two decisions Thursday finding Russia in violation of the European Convention on Human Rights [text] in cases concerning the deaths or abductions [press releases] of Russian nationals in Chechnya in 2000. The court ruled in Albekov v. Russia [judgment text] that Russia violated Article 2 of the Convention by failing to carry out effective criminal investigations into the deaths of or injuries sustained by three Russians caused by several land mine explosions. The court also ruled in Zaurbekov v. Russia [judgment text] that Russia violated several articles of the Convention in connection with the October 2000 disappearance of Abdulkasim Zaurbekov, and Russia's subsequent failure to investigate. The court directed Russia to pay a total of more than €88,000 ($121,000) to the families. RIA Novosti has more.

The ECHR has consistently ruled against Russia in similar cases involving Chechnya rights violations. In May, the court ruled [JURIST report] that Russia was responsible for the disappearance of a dozen people during Russian armed raids in Chechnya in 2002 and 2003. In July 2007, the court ruled that Russian authorities were responsible for the shooting deaths of 11 unarmed Chechen civilians, and in June 2007 it held that Russian authorities were liable for the 2003 deaths of four Chechen family members [JURIST reports].

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