Savriddin Dzhurayev v. Russia

Key Judgment

Legal Relevance

Keywords: Duty to Investigate | Duty to Prosecute | Extraterritorial Jurisdiction | Interim/Urgent Measures | Reparations | Refugees and Migrants | Burden of Proof | Obligation to Prevent | Deprivation of Liberty | Evidence | Systemic Practice

Themes: Characteristics of the Crime | Prevention | Related Crimes

The Court found a violation of the prohibition of torture and ill-treatment in three respects. First, the Court found that the victim's forcible return to his country exposed him to a real risk of being subjected to ill treatment. The authorities failed to protect him despite the fact that his personal circumstances (in particular, the fact that he was granted asylum and charged with political crimes), the circumstances in which he was abducted, and the general human rights situation in his country provided a sufficient basis from which to infer the existence of such a risk. Second, the Court found that the State failed to comply with its procedural obligation to conduct a thorough and effective investigation into the victim's abduction and transfer. Lastly, the Court found the State responsible for its involvement in the victim's transfer, holding that it could not have happened without the knowledge and either passive or active participation of State authorities.

Judgment Date

September 9, 2013



Judicial Body

European Court of Human Rights

Articles violated

Article 3 [ECHR], Article 5(4) [ECHR], Article 34 [ECHR]

Articles not violated / not dealt with

Article 13 [ECHR]

Facts of the Case

"Mr. Savriddin Dzhanobiddinovich Dzhurayev, a Tajik national, fled his country for Russia in June 2006, fearing persecution because of his religious activities. In November 2006 the Prosecutor’s Office of Tajikistan brought criminal proceedings against him and authorised his detention pending trial, charging him with forming a criminal armed group involved in an armed attack. Mr. Dzhurayev was apprehended by Russian police in November 2009. In June 2010 Russia ordered Mr. Dzhurayev's extradition. Mr. Dzhurayev complained about the extradition order, stating that the Tajik authorities would subject him to torture with a view to making him confess to a crime he had not committed. His extradition order was upheld, but the extradition was postponed following an interim measure issued by the European Court of Human Rights. In the meantime, Mr. Dzhurayev remained in detention until May 2011.

In September 2011, Mr. Dzhurayev was granted temporary asylum in Russia. In October 2011, his car was blocked by a group of unidentified men: he was fired upon, beaten up and forced into a van. He was kept in the van for a night and a day and subjected to ill-treatment. When Mr. Dzhurayev showed his captors the temporary asylum certificate, they laughed at him. The following day he was taken to the airport without going through security checks, and handed over to a Tajik patrol, who forced him into an aircraft. The aircraft arrived in Tajikistan, where Mr. Dzhurayev was handed over to the Tajik authorities. His requests for a lawyer were refused, and he was detained for an unspecified period of time at a police station, where he was questioned and severely ill-treated in order to make him confess to crimes and state that he had come back to Tajikistan voluntarily. Mr. Dzhurayev's representatives had contacted Russian authorities, asking them to take urgent measures to prevent the applicant’s forcible removal from Russian territory. Russian authorities did not take any protective measure in response, and failed to institute criminal proceedings into the abduction. In April 2012 a Tajik court sentenced Mr. Dzhurayev to 26 years’ imprisonment. In December 2012, Mr. Dzhurayev's father was told he was not allowed to meet with his son in detention due to his failure to help the authorities apprehend him and bring him back to the country. At the time of the application, Mr. Dzhurayev was serving a prison sentence in Tajikistan."

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