Torture and confessions in Russia



Article by: Vitaliy Portnikov

The charges that the head of Russia’s Investigative Committee Aleksandr Bastrykin has brought against the Prime Minister of Ukraine Arseniy Yatseniuk cause hearty laughter among almost everyone who hears them. (Bastrykin claims that Yatseniuk fought on the side of Chechen terrorists against Russia during the Chechen War in the mid-1990s — Ed.)

It is hard to imagine anything more ridiculous or insane. And even though the head of the Investigative Committee already had the reputation as an odious tyrant, the accusations against Yatseniuk have only strengthened it.

But actually all this is not amusing at all. It is not amusing because Bastrykin did not make his accusations just like that. His words will become part of the criminal case that is being prepared in Russia against Mykola Karpiuk and Stanislav Klykh. Karpiuk was kidnapped in the Chernihiv Oblast and Klykh was detained in Russia. Both men are accused of involvement in the Chechen war. And when you consider, for example, that Klykh has nothing to do with that war, you can only imagine what methods have been used to extract this testimony.

Not long ago I met the Ukrainian student Yuriy Yatsenko, who had also been detained in Russia under meaningless charges but then, fortunately, was released. The young man was tortured in order to extract a confession from him that was far less significant than the denunciation against Yatseniuk. It is hard to imagine what is being done in order to obtain similar confessions.

One of Bastrykin’s predecessors, the Prosecutor General of the USSR Andrei Vyshinsky (state prosecutor during Stalin’s show trials — Ed.), went down in history of world lawlessness with the phrase “confession is a queen over all sorts of evidence.” In Russia during the time of Vyshinsky these confessions were obtained by means of terrible, inhuman torture. In Russia during the time of Bastrykin this is true as well. And each time we laugh at another Russian idiocy we need to remember that for the purpose of a “legal” presentation of this insanity the torturers and sadists of Russian special services are torturing our fellow citizens today.

Translated by: Anna Mostovych
Source: Espreso TV

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