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24 October 2017
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Lawyer of young Ukrainian abducted by Russia in Belarus fears the client may suffer torture

Yevhenia Zakrevska, the lawyer of the family of Pavlo Hryb who has reportedly been abducted by the Russian FSB security service in Belarus has applied to the European Court of Human Rights claiming that the missing young man's life is under threat because of his disease.

Pavlo Hryb's Facebook
Pavlo Hryb's Facebook

"We have appealed to the European Court of Human Rights in connection with the application of urgent measures under Rule 39. We believe that the Russian Federation has been violating such rights of Hryb as the right to freedom and not to be subjected to torture," Zakrevska said at a press conference.

She explained that Hryb's life is under threat because his diagnosis "portal hypertension" requires daily intake of necessary medications and a special diet, without which there is a risk of death.

She recalled that Hryb had disappeared 11 days before. He is most likely to be kept in the FSB's remand center in Krasnodar. Nether lawyer nor members of his family received any information from the Russian law enforcement agencies.

In her words, the official response came only from the State Border Service of Ukraine and from the border guards of Belarus who confirmed he had crossed the border with Belarus and that country's border guards had not detained him. He reached the destination, the city of Gomel.

At the same time, Pavlo's father – Ihor Hryb – suggested that the Belarusian border guards are most likely hiding the truth.

He explained that when he came to Gomel on August 25 to look for his son, he first turned to patrol policemen. When they typed his son's name in the wanted persons database on their tablet, he accidentally saw that he was wanted by the Russian FSB in Krasnodar Krai.

However, he later received information from the Belarusian border guards that his son had not been detained.

Ihor Hryb concluded that his son was in the wanted persons database of the Belarusian border service, but for some reason he was allowed to get to Gomel, where, probably, he was detained by another security service, most likely by the FSB of the Russian Federation. 

Journalists find out how FSB lured Ukrainian youngster to Belarus for abductionHryb's family and the lawyer called on the authorities of the Russian Federation to immediately inform about the place of Pavlo Hryb's detention  and the charges brought against him. They also insist they should be informed about his health condition and ask to provide him with proper medical care, allowing the Ukrainian consul and an independent lawyer to visit him.

They demand that the Belarusian authorities ensure a proper investigation into the enforced disappearance of Hryb and cooperation with the law enforcement agencies of Ukraine his search and return to Ukraine.

They also insist that the Ukrainian authorities should arrange a meeting between Hryb and the Ukrainian consul and/or the Ukrainian parliament's human rights commissioner.

Also, Zakrevskaya added she had not received any information from the Russian Federation regarding the missing person, despite the relevant appeals. The Belarusian party has so far only registered a statement from the young man's relatives about his disappearance.

Ihor Hryb earlier told UNIAN his son, 19, had been detained by FSB operatives in the Belarusian city of Gomel where he had arrived by charter bus on Ukraine's Independence Day, August 24, to meet with a girl whom he supposedly met on the internet. It was established he had crossed the Ukrainian-Belarusian border unhindered. The contact with the young man has been lost since then.

His father believes that his son was snatched by the FSB over his patriotic views, vocally expressed on social media. 

Tags: Hryb, Belarus, Russia, FSB, missing, abduction

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