Open letter to the Prosecutor General of Ukraine Yu. Lutsenko from Association VAYFOND
This letter was sent to official contacts of General Prosecutor’s Office of Ukraine
Dear Yuriy Vitalyevich,
On behalf of the Chechen Charitable Human Rights Association VAYFOND, we are addressing to you concerning our compatriots who live in Ukraine.
Our organization is established in 2017 by natives of the Chechen Republic who live in the EU countries. The main goal of our organization is to protect human rights and help compatriots in a difficult situation. The organization is created, registered and operates in accordance with the laws of the Kingdom of Sweden (Org.nr: 802508-1848). More detailed information on our organization can be found on the website: http://vayfond.com/en/about-us/
You have already extradited one our compatriot, Ingush Tumgoev Timur, at the request of the FSB of Russia.
Timur managed to phone one of his relatives for one minute and briefly talk about his situation. The man who provided Timur with the connection to the relative, told us later that Timur was beaten, and he lost his memory partially as a result of the beating. Timur said that he faces a prison sentence from 15 years to life imprisonment. It is a pity, that Ukraine, without any evidence, handed over the enemy of Russia (and your ally, helper) so easily to this country to be torn apart there. Timur was in great sadness, and asked people not to forget about him and not to leave him without support. Timur’s whereabouts were not even reported to his lawyer, every time “throwing dust in the lawyer’s eyes”, giving false information on Timur’s location.
We consider the extradition of Timur Tumgoev to Russia to be a great injustice and even cruelty, it was a big mistake that broke one more life. Now we are working at his case, but of course we have very little hope for any justice.
But the issue is no longer about him, but about another our compatriot, who is also facing extradition to Russia from Ukraine. A native of the Chechen Republic, Ali Bakaev was accused by the Russian party of organizing an attack on Rosgvardia in the village of Naurskaya (the Chechen Republic) and was put on the international wanted list.
Novaya Gazeta wrote about what happened that night:
Bakaev Ali was arrested on January 31, 2018 in Ukraine, he did not even suspect that he might be on the international wanted list, although he knew that in Russia he was being persecuted. Having studied the materials of the criminal case and all the facts of the incident, VAYFOND Association is sure: Bakaev Ali could not be the organizer of the attack; the charges were fabricated by the Russian party. The Russian Prosecutor’s Office did not provide any evidence of Ali’s involvement in the attack on Rosgvardia. As for testimony, the practice of interrogating witnesses in Russia shows that any testimony needed for siloviki can be obtained by using torture. Under such cruel physical pressure, a person can sign any documents and give any false testimony that is demanded of him.
We believe that Russia accused him of organizing this attack in order to “pin” the murder of soldiers on him (possibly murdered in Syria), and of course to prove once again that the executed young people were attackers and therefore were killed.
Now the situation of Ali Bakaev is getting worse. We are very worried that he will be taken away any time on some pretext, and then it will turn out that he was extradited to Russia (as it was in Tumgoev’s case). Migration authorities are refusing asylum to Ali and his family, the extradition court is content with Ali’s extradition to Russia. We sent a statement to Interpol with a request to find out to which extent the Interpol persecution of Bakaev complied with the regulations of this organization, since Interpol does not have the right to put people, who are persecuted for political or religious reasons in their homeland, on the wanted list.
Ali has a young son, and his wife is pregnant.
We appeal to you not to extradite Ali under any circumstances to Russia, where he can face death. Both he and his family will suffer. Do not make another irreversible mistake.
The Chechens saw in your misfortune their own one, and they did not stand aside. We already have losses of people very dear to us, such as Isa Munaev and Okueva Amina. It is very unpleasant for us to observe how Ukraine, after everything that has been overcome, hands over our compatriots to Russia, knowing well what these gangsters in epaulets can do.
On behalf of all Chechens, supporters of independence, we urge you not to extradite Ali Bakaev and assist him in obtaining asylum in Ukraine. We also hope that Ukraine will support Timur Tumgoev.
With best regards, the Chairman of the Chechen Charitable and Human Rights Association Vayfond Mansur Sadulaev