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Monday, December 21, 2009

Political terror rules Russia

Interesting interview today
in Gara newspaper (in Spanish) to Svetlana Gannushkina, speaker of the human rights NGO Memorial, honored with a Sajarov price, on the terrible situation in Chechnya and Russia in general. Some excerpts:

Political murders are the norm, not the exception.

We are witnessing a Chechenization of all Russia.

Svetlana Gannushkina (Memorial)

On Chechnya:

[Razman Kadirov] and his men do whatever they want. There is no law. And fear has become part of the Chechnyan mentality. It is what happened in the times of Stalin, of Hitler, of Mussolini: people begin to love their oppressors and fear each other, just like in the old times.

In Chechnya we can't even speak of corruption as such. The term "corruption" means a collaboration between the political power and criminal organizations. In Chechnya there is no difference at all between the political and the criminal power: they are the same thing.

On the murder of Natalia Estemirova:

They went then to ask the neighbors and a woman said that at 9am they had brought Natalia into a car by force, while she cried she was being kidnapped. See how is fear that this woman, who knew Natalia and her work, did not dare to call anybody, not even Natalia's daughter, whom she also knew personally.

At the Kremlin:

Recently several representatives of human rights organizations were received by President Medvedev. We told him about the murders and he compared them to common crime. We don't say that the life one person is more valuable than other's, but political murders reveal the situation of society. The difference is huge because these reveal that power is allied with the criminals. And not just murders: the fact that they create false evidence like weapons or drugs in order to inculpate you, something that doesn't just happen in Chechnya but in all Russia, shows that something is very much rotten. It destroys all institutions and the legal system.

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