03/01/2019

Urgent Action: Three Jehovah’s Witnesses At Risk of Torture (Russian Federation: UA 29.19)


On 15 February Russian law enforcement officials carried out raids on homes of Jehovah’s Witnesses in the city of Surgut and arrested at least 40 people. There are credible allegations of torture and other ill-treatment in custody. Sergei Loginov, Artur Severinchik and Yevgeniy Fedin remain remanded in custody and are at serious risk of torture and other ill-treatment. They are prisoners of conscience, detained solely in connection with their religious beliefs, and must be released immediately and unconditionally.

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Chairman of the Investigative Committee of the Russian Federation
Alexander Bastrykin
Tekhnicheskii pereulok, dom 2
105005 Moscow, Russian Federation
Fax: +7499 265 90 77/ +7499 265 97 75
Twitter: @sledcom_rf
Ambassador Anatoly Antonov
Embassy of the Russian Federation
2650 Wisconsin Ave. NW, Washington DC 20007
Phone: 1 202 298 5700  I  Fax: 1 202 298 5735

Email: [email protected]
Twitter: @RusEmbUSA
Salutation: Dear Ambassador

Dear Chairman of the Investigative Committee,

I am writing to express my utmost concern following recent reports of torture and ill-treatment of Jehovah’s Witnesses while in custody of law enforcement officials. At least 40 people, including minors, were arrested during raids of Jehovah’s Witnesses’ homes in Surgut on 15 February. 

Amnesty International has examined evidence and carried out interviews with several persons who claim they were subjected to torture and other ill-treatment while in custody to extract “confessions” of participation in an “extremist organization”. Some victims reported threats of rape.

Jehovah’s Witnesses Sergei Loginov, Artur Severinchik and Yevgeniy Fedin remain remanded in custody and are at serious risk of further torture and other ill-treatment. They are prisoners of conscience, detained solely for peacefully exercising their right to freedom of religion. 

I therefore urge you to immediately and unconditionally release Sergei Loginov, Artur Severinchik and Yevgeniy Fedin; and ensure that they are protected from torture and other ill-treatment, that allegations of torture and other ill-treatment against Sergei Loginov, Artur Severinchik and Yevgeniy Fedin, and other Jehovah’s Witnesses, are promptly, effectively and impartially investigated, and all responsible brought to justice.

Yours sincerely,

ADDITIONAL RESOURCES