Background Briefing

Worse Than a War: "Disappearances" in Chechnya-a Crime Against Humanity

Worse Than a War

“Disappearances” in Chechnya—a Crime Against Humanity

Related Material

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More on Human Rights in Chechnya

A Human Rights Watch Briefing Paper

March 2005

Executive Summary

Background: The Current Situation in Chechnya

Russia’s Efforts to Block the Draft Convention on Enforced and Involuntary Disappearances



It’s worse than a war. During the war, we weren’t so scared… We knew, of course, that we might be hit by a bullet – no one was safe from that. But now, how can one sleep through the night?  They wake people, take them away, shoot them…  I’m terrified to talk, the prosecutor’s office is terrified – we’re all scared!  At any moment [the security forces] might come after anyone of us. Ask anyone here – we are all weeping from fear. --A father of a young man who was summarily executed in June, 2004, Chechnya, February 4, 2005.