World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search


UK Wont Extradite Chechen envoy Akhmed Zakayev

Russian Federation/UK: UK Court decides not to extradite Chechen envoy Akhmed Zakayev

Amnesty International welcomed today's decision of Bow Street Magistrates' Court, London, to decline the request of the Russian Federation for the extradition of the Chechen envoy Akhmed Zakayev.

"The widespread use of torture and ill-treatment by the Russian authorities, as documented by Amnesty International and other human rights groups, had given rise to well-based fears for Akhmed Zakayev's physical safety if sent back to Russia," the human rights organization said.

"Torture and ill-treatment in Russian police cells, as well as the harassment of ethnic Chechens, are common and as the representative of Chechen leader Aslan Maskhadov, Mr Zakayev would have been particularly vulnerable."

Amnesty International welcomes the decision of the judge that the extradition request should be declined on the grounds that Akhmed Zakayev's ethnicity and political beliefs made it likely that he would be tortured if returned to the Russian Federation. Amnesty International had also been concerned that if returned, Akhmed Zakayev would not have been given a fair trial.

During the extradition court hearings in the United Kingdom, experts and witnesses for the defence gave evidence of widespread torture of inmates in pretrial detention centres and prisons. One witness, Duk-Vakha Doshuyev, alleged that he had been tortured into providing accounts to support the Russian Federation's extradition bid. Amnesty International calls for an independent investigation of this allegation.


Akhmed Zakayev, an envoy of the Chechen President Aslan Maskhadov, was first arrested in Copenhagen on 30 October 2002 where he was attending the World Chechen Congress. The Congress, planned well in advance, took place in the wake of the hostage-taking incident in a Moscow theatre, which left some 150 people dead. Amnesty International welcomed the decision by Denmark's Justice Ministry to refuse, due to lack of evidence, the extradition of Akhmed Zakayev. His extradition had been requested by the Russian authorities. (see ). Akhmed Zakayev was arrested on his arrival to the UK from Copenhagen on 5 December 2002 and was later released on bail. Amnesty International urged the UK authorities not to extradite Akhmed Zakayev to the Russian Federation as he may be tortured or ill-treated there. (see

Children with mental disability in Russian Federation - new attitudes, old practices. Read more in the Wire (November 2003) at

© Scoop Media

World Headlines


UN: Decades Of Health Gains At Risk In Brazil Due To COVID-19

Although COVID-19 cases are declining in Brazil, the pandemic is putting decades of public health gains there at risk, the head of the World Health Organization ( WHO ) said on Friday. With global attention and support focused this week ... More>>

UN Report: Myanmar Approaching Point Of Economic Collapse

The turmoil following the military coup in Myanmar, coupled with the impact of COVID-19 could result in up to 25 million people – nearly half of the country’s population, living in poverty by early next year, a United Nations report said on Friday. That ... More>>

World Vision: India’s Second Wave Shows The Global Fight Against COVID-19 Is Far From Won

As India’s COVID-19 daily infection rates reach devastating levels, international aid agency World Vision has warned that the world is nowhere near defeating this virus and some nations are yet to face their worst days. Andrew Morley, World Vision ... More>>

Focus On: UN SDGs

UN: Learning From COVID-19, Forum To Highlight Critical Role Of Science, Technology And Innovation In Global Challenges

New York, 4 May —To build on the bold innovations in science, technology and innovations that produced life-saving solutions during the COVID-19 pandemic, the UN will bring together experts to highlight measures that can broaden the development and deployment ... More>>

What COVID-19 Has Taught Us: “Healthcare Can No Longer Exist Without Technology”

A grandmother in a village in the Gambia should have the same quality of life and access to healthcare they deserve as in New York or London. Photo: InnovaRx Global Health Start-up Works To Bridge Healthcare Gap In The Gambia By: Pavithra Rao As ... More>>

UN News: Motherhood On The Brink In Yemen

War, a humanitarian crisis, a looming famine, a health system close to collapse and the deepening impact of the COVID-19 pandemic have led to a “catastrophic situation” in which a woman dies in childbirth every two hours in Yemen, according to the UN ... More>>