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Politkovskaya case to go to the European Court of Human Rights

According to lawyer Karina Moskalenko, the application is over the failure to efficiently investigate the case and failure to fulfil the State’s duty to provide the individual, especially where the victim had already faced many threats

Renowned lawyer Karina Moskalenko, who is representing the two children of murdered journalist and human rights defender, Anna Politkovskaya, stated at a press conference on Friday that the “Politkovskaya” case would in the near future be examined by the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg.

Ms Moskalenko did not say exactly when the application would be heard, but spoke of a case on substance inexorably approaching, She added that the application had been lodged on behalf of all members of the family in April 2007, and that it had been registered in the same month.

She explained that the application “is about the inefficiency of the examination, the lack of will to investigate this case and violations of the rights of the victim”.

Karina Moskalenko spoke of there being an amazing concept of positive duties which the State has with regard to the right to life. The State should not allow crimes, prevent them and protect people, especially those who have already faced certain specific threats”.

Since “for some reason the authorities have not done this”, this is a violation of their obligation to protect the right to life, enshrined in the European Convention on Human Rights.

It was reported earlier in the day that the court in Moscow had turned down an application from Anna Politkovskaya’s relatives, asking that the retrial of defendants in the 2006 murder be halted and the case returned to prosecutors.

In February the Moscow Military District Court acquitted Dzhabrail and Ibragim Makhmudov, brothers from Chechnya, and former police officer Sergei Khadzhikurbanov of involvement in the journalist’s murder. However, in June Russia’s Supreme Court overturned the acquittal and ordered a retrial.

Politkovskaya’s family argued that the evidence available for the retrial was the same as during the first trial and that the case had not yet been solved.

Lawyers argued the case should be combined with that of the person accused of actually carrying out the murder,  Rustam Makhmudov, who remains at large.

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