March 21 International Campaign "Show them alive!" published on its website an open letter to the newly elected President of Turkmenistan , Serdar Berdimuhamedov .
Its authors recall that since 2002 enforced disappearances have been practiced in the penitentiary system in Turkmenistan, with hundreds of victims. The detention in complete isolation from the outside world is a gross violation of the national legislation of Turkmenistan and its international obligations, as well as a crime in the field of human rights.
International campaign "Show them alive!" recorded 162 cases of disappearances in Turkmen prisons. “People continue to disappear into prisons after being arrested and are kept in complete isolation, without access to legal assistance and to their families. At least 27 people from this list died in prison, and the real number of those who went missing and died alone in these years is probably much higher, ”the document says.
The authors of the letter listed the names of those people from the list whose terms of imprisonment ended in 2017-2021, but nothing is known about them. These are Annageldy Akmuradov , Mamur Ataev , Esen Buriev , Isa Garataev , Bazar Gurbanov , Rustem Dzhumaev , Batyr Sarjaev , Konstantin Shikhmuradov , Orazmammet Yklymov and Ovezmurat Yazmuradov . The terms of imprisonment of several more people will end in 2022. It also talks about Gulgeldy Annaniyazov, who served his full term in March 2019, but instead of being released, was transferred into exile in a remote area of Turkmenistan, where he lives in extremely poor conditions and has health problems.
“We ask you to immediately release all those who have served their sentences, as well as provide information to family members of other forcibly disappeared prisoners about their health. Finally, we ask you to immediately put an end to the practice of enforced disappearances in the penitentiary system of Turkmenistan,” the authors of the letter write.
Human rights activists believe that the decision to release "may be the beginning of a real solution to the problem of enforced disappearances in prisons and an opportunity for the newly elected president to create a new reality in which enforced disappearances will become a problem of the past."
Source: Chronicles of Turkmenistan