Georgia
22.07.09
Urgent Interventions

Violations of due process and fear for the safety of Mr. Vakhtang Maisaia

Case GEO 220709
Violations of due process/ Fear for safety

The International Secretariat of OMCT requests your URGENT intervention in the following situation in Georgia.

Brief description of the situation

The International Secretariat of OMCT has been informed by the Human Rights Center (HRIDC), a member of OMCT SOS Network, about the denial of due process to Mr. Vakhtang Maisaia, a political scientist and military expert, who was arrested for espionage on 5 May 2009, and who is currently detained in Gldani Prison #8 in Tbilisi. OMCT fears that Mr. Maisaia may be at risk of torture and other ill-treatment.

According to the information received, while Mr. Vakhtang Maisaia has had access to his lawyer since his arrest, the interrogation sessions have repeatedly taken place during night hours without the presence of his lawyer. In addition, Mr. Vakhtang Maisaia’s lawyer was reportedly only able to have access to his client’s case file on 17 May 2009 and then merely in a restricted way.

According to the same information, during his interrogation at the Counter Intelligence Department, Mr. Vakhtang Maisaia was intimidated and threatened with physical violence, following which he allegedly signed a statement in which he pleads guilty as well as provides the names of two other individuals. Mr. Vakhtang Maisaia had later reportedly to confirm this statement while being again threatened with violence. He was further requested to collaborate with the Counter Intelligence Department failing which he would be sent to jail in harsh conditions. Mr. Vakhtang Maisaia reportedly refused such collaboration.

OMCT is concerned for the safety of Mr. Vakhtang Maisaia and urges the authorities of Georgia to guarantee his physical and psychological integrity at all times in accordance with regional and international human rights law, in particular the provisions of the European Convention on Human Rights, the UN Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR).

OMCT is further concerned that the authorities do not respect the rights of Mr. Vakhtang Maisaia guaranteed by the law of Georgia and international human rights standards.

Action requested

Please write to the authorities in Georgia urging them to:

  1. Guarantee, in all circumstances, the physical and psychological integrity of Mr. Vakhtang Maisaia;
  2. Guarantee unconditional access to his lawyer and his family, as well as guarantee that he is examined by independent medical doctors and receives adequate medical care in accordance with, inter alia, the recommendations of the European Committee for the Prevention of Torture and Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment and the UN Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners;
  3. Guarantee that no evidence obtained under torture and other forms of ill-treatment, or threats thereof, be used in court proceedings against Mr. Vakhtang Maisaia as stipulated in Article 15 of the UN Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment;
  4. Order his immediate release in the absence of valid legal charges that are consistent with international legal standards, or, if such charges exist, bring him before an impartial, independent, competent and fair tribunal and guarantee his procedural rights at all times;
  5. Carry out a prompt, effective, thorough, independent and impartial investigation into the threats and intimidations, the result of which must be made public, in order to bring those responsible before a competent, independent and impartial tribunal and apply penal, civil and/or administrative sanctions as provided by law;
  6. Guarantee the respect of human rights and the fundamental freedoms throughout the country in accordance with national laws and international human rights standards.

Addresses

  • Mr. Mikhail Saakashvili, President, State Chancellery, 7 Ingorokhva Street, 0134 Tbilisi, Georgia; Tel : (995 32) 28-27-13; (995 32) 28-24-00; (995 32)99 96 53; ( 995 32) 98-72-62, ( 995 32) / 99-87-50, Fax: ( 995 32) 98-72-62 (99532) 28-27-68; (99532)28-27-14; E-mail: pr@president.gov.ge, vano@president.gov.ge
  • Mrs. Eka Tkeshelashvili, Secretary of the National Security Council of Georgia, 7, Ingorokhva Street. 0134 Tbilisi, Georgia, Tel: (995 32) 93 23 22 ; Fax: (995 32) 98 99 72 ; E-mail: snsc@gol.ge
  • Mr. Ivane Merabishvili, Minister of Interior, Ministry of Interior of Georgia, 10, Gulua street, Tbilisi, Georgia. Tel: (995 32) 74 62 50; +995 32 99 62 96 / 99 80 50 / 99 95 55/27 28 44/99 53 50/98 39 43; Fax:(995 32) 98 71 46 / 99 95 24; E-mail: presscenter@pol.ge, press_center@pol.ge
  • Mr. Giorgi Arsenishvili, Head of the Parliamentary Committee on Human Rights Petitions and Relations with the Civil Society, Parliament of Georgia, 8 Rustaveli Avenue. 380018 Tbilisi, Georgia; Tel: (995 32) 28 13 88; Fax: (995 32) 92 15 63. Email: Humanrights@parliament.ge
  • Mr. Zurab Adeishvili, Minister of Justice, 19, Griboedov st, Tbilisi, 0108, Georgia, Tel: (995 32) 93 27 21 / 93 50 49 / 75-82-22; Fax: (995 32) 93 02 25 / 75-82-22 ; Email: justice@justice.gov.ge
  • Mr. Sozar Subari, Ombudsman of Georgia, 11, Machabeli street, Tbilisi 0107,Georgia, Phone: (995 32) 92 39 60 / 92 24 78 / 92 24 81 / 93 15 85; Fax: ( 995 32) 92 24 70; Email: info@ombudsman.ge
  • Mr. Giorgi Gorgiladze, Ambassador, Permanent mission of Georgia to the United Nations in Geneva, Rue Richard Wagner 1, 1202 Geneva, Switzerland, Fax: + 41 22 733 90 33 ; Email: geomission.geneva@bluewin.ch
  • Ambassador Mr. Salomé Samadaschvele, Diplomatic Mission of Georgia to Brussels, Belgium, Fax: + 32 2 732 85 47

Please also write to the diplomatic representations of Georgia in your respective countries.

Geneva, 22 July 2009

Kindly inform OMCT of any action undertaken quoting the code number of this appeal in your reply.


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