Disappeared in Turkmenistan's Prisons: Are They Still Alive? Briefing of the Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe, One Hundred Thirteenth Congress, Second Session, February 20, 2014   [open pdf - 306KB]

This is the February 20, 2014 briefing titled "Disappeared in Turkmenistan's Prisons," delivered to the Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe. From the opening statement of Janice Helwig: "I'd like to welcome you all today on behalf of the Helsinki Commission for this briefing on 'Disappeared in Turkmenistan's Prisons: Are They still Alive?' I think most of you know that 10 years ago, 10 OSCE [Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe] countries invoked the Moscow Mechanism against Turkmenistan out of concern over hundreds of arrests in the wake of an alleged failed coup attempt. These cases were detailed in the resulting report by Moscow Mechanism rapporteur Emmanuel Decaux, who, by the way is now head of the U.N. Committee on Enforced Disappearances. Many of these individuals remain unaccounted for, and other individuals imprisoned since then have also been disappeared. The Helsinki Commission has continued, over the years, to raise these cases and to ask for information from the government of Turkmenistan on the health and whereabouts of these individuals." Statements, letters, and materials submitted for the record include those of the following: Rachel Denber, Catherine Fitzpatrick, Peter Zalmayev, Kate Watters, and Boris Shikhmuradov.

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