Publication: North Caucasus Weekly Volume: 3 Issue: 18

On June 13, the commission on juridical questions and human rights of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe visited Saratov. On the subject of Chechnya, Rudolf Bindig of Germany, a member of the commission, declared that “the Council of Europe categorically does not approve of the policies of Russia in this republic [Chechnya]. ‘We observe the restoration of Chechnya [he said] but we do not see the observance of human rights, and that concerns us in the first place.'” Bindig underlined that the Council of Europe sees the harsh terrorist acts which are directed against the soldiers and peaceful residents of Russia but added that this “does not justify arrests, beatings and the disappearance of people, plus there is a likelihood that they are also being subjected to torture” (Kommersant, June 14). On the subject of Chechen IDPs presently residing in Ingushetia, Bindig cautioned: “The return of refugees is a delicate question. At the moment, it is not possible because of security concerns and because the Chechen infrastructure is not yet ready” (Agence France Presse, June 13).