Jailed Caucasus activist in 'very bad shape': family

25th March 2011, Comments 0 comments

A top North Caucasus rights activist detained by police this week is in a "very bad shape" and authorities are denying him access to medicine, his family said on Friday.

Magomed Khazbiyev, a prominent activist in the volatile Ingushetia region, was Wednesday brutally beaten and taken away by police after taking part in a rally.

Police have said he was detained for disobeying authorities and attempting to "organise disorder."

His sister Leila said Khazbiyev was being kept in custody in the regional town of Malgobek and denied access to a lawyer and medicine despite his ill health.

"He has duodenal ulcer, they say he was in a very bad shape yesterday," she said on popular Echo of Moscow radio, adding that his relatives planned to lodge a complaint with the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg.

Khazbiyev was detained along with his two brothers and several others after participating in a demonstration of several dozen people who gathered to draw attention to the disappearance of a local resident.

Police said this week the activist was sentenced to 10 days in jail.

Russian authorities are fighting an Islamist militancy in the Caucasus and rights activists have long criticised their tactics in raids for targeting civilians as well as suspects.

Rights activists also say scores of people suffer or even die from untreated illnesses in detention in Russia.

In one of the most flagrant violations of human rights in Russia in the past years, lawyer Sergei Magnitsky died in Moscow in 2009 after being denied medical treatment.

© 2011 AFP

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