Condemn attack on Madina Magomadova

Press release, Stockholm 18 June 2013

Civil Rights Defenders and the Swedish Peace and Arbitration Society are seriously concerned about the recent attack against Madina Magomadova, Head of the NGO “Mothers of Chechnya”. On June 8, 2013 two unknown assailants attacked Madina Magomadova on a street in Moscow. The attack was carried out after Magomadova’s meeting with press regarding the preparation of the international photo exhibition dedicated to abducted civilians in Chechnya.

“We call on the authorities to ensure that threats or attacks against Madina Magomadova and other human rights defenders are publicly condemned and investigated. The attack should be seen in the context of the ever-hardening climate for human rights defenders in Russia”, says Marie Månson, Programme Director at Civil Rights Defenders.

According to Magomadova, two unidentified assailants, who were present at the venue during her meeting with journalists and allegedly recorded it, followed her after she left the venue. The assailants resorted to violence against her after she refused to enter a car into which the assailants tried to force her. She managed to escape from the assailants thanks to the interference of passers-by. The violent attack caused Magomadova significant physical and psychological harm. She is currently under observation at a hospital in Moscow.

The NGO chaired by Madina Magomadova “Mothers of Chechnya” was established in 1995 as a reaction to the high number of forced disappearances of civilians during Chechen wars. The purpose of its work is searching for abductees in Chechnya, providing social and legal assistance to the relatives and friends of abductees and informing about the target group in Chechnya and neighbouring republics.

“Russia must take all necessary measures to ensure the protection of human rights defenders and contribute to an environment in which human rights defenders can work safely, in accordance with the UN Declaration on Human Rights Defenders”, says Anna Ek, Chair of the Swedish Peace and Arbitration Society.

Contact:
Anna Ek, Swedish Peace and Arbitration Society: +46-709-54 05 13, anna.ek@svenskafreds.se
Marie Månson, Civil Rights Defenders: +46-709-89 60 10, marie.manson@civilrightsdefenders.org

Madina Magomadova is also available to answer questions,
 please contact Anna Ek for further information.

Categories: Statements.
Tags: Madina Magomadova, Mothers of Chechnya, and Violence against human rights defenders.
Regions: Russia.