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UN says Russia must end jail torture, prosecute guards


REUTERS
GENEVA
RUSSIA must halt torture of detainees and prosecute the perpetrators, including prison guards caught on video beating an inmate, United Nations human rights investigators said on Friday.
The UN Committee against Torture, in a rare move, told Russian authorities to report back in a year on progress in holding to account guards who beat Yevgeny Makarov with truncheons and their superiors who suppressed the year-old tape, which provoked a public outcry.
Despite"numerous reliable"reports of torture, they rarely lead to prosecutions, or those responsible are charged with simple abuse of authority rather than a crime, said panel member Claude Heller.
"The strengthening of the rule of law would be in a certain sense our main recommendation,"Heller told a news briefing.
Jens Modvig, panel chairman, said:"One could get the impression that the prison system in Russia is almost a state in the state and is not really being scrutinised from the outside. The prison system should be better monitored with a view to preventing the episodes that we see repeatedly."
The Novaya Gazeta newspaper published the notorious 10-minute video clip last month and said the incident took place in June 2017 in a prison in the city of Yaroslavl, northeast of Moscow.

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