In early February 2000, Khadzhi-Murat Yandiyev, a young man from Chechnya, was arrested by Russian federal forces during the Russian military campaign to regain control over Grozny, the capital of Chechnya. A Russian general searched Yandiyev and then gave an order to execute him. Nobody has seen or heard from Yandiyev since.
Yandiyev’s mother, Fatima Bazorkina, learned about her son’s detention from a televised news broadcast. A CNN reporter was at the time embedded with the military forces and taped the encounter between Yandieyev and the general.
Bazorkina appealed to local and federal prosecutors and numerous other official institutions in Russia, but the Russian authorities refused to investigate the case properly. Realizing that her case would not be investigated effectively in Russia, Bazorkina, with the help of the British barrister Gareth Pierce, lodged an application with the European Court of Human Rights. Bazorkina has since then been represented by the organization Stichting Russian Justice Initiative.
On 8 December 2005, the European Court of Human Rights conducted an oral hearing in the case Bazorkina v. Russia at its seat in Strasbourg, France, in the attendance of Bazorkina.
A decision in the case was delivered on 27 July 2006.
Bazorkina v. Russia (judgment)
Bazorkina v. Russia (admissibility)
Press-release oral hearing
Reports by NGOs:
HRW: Worse Than a War (03/05)
HRW: The "Dirty War" in Chechnya (03/01)
BBC NEWS: A Chechen mother's painful search (27/07)
Cafebabel: A European justice for Chechnya's victims (05/06)