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Uzbek journalist Ali Feruz deportation suspended as ECHR reviews complaint

Earlier, Moscow’s Basmanny District Court made a decision that Feruz, who is a citizen of Uzbekistan, should be expelled from Russia
Ali Feruz (Hudoberdi Nurmatov) Artyom Geodakyan/TASS
Ali Feruz (Hudoberdi Nurmatov)
© Artyom Geodakyan/TASS

MOSCOW, August 9. /TASS/. Novaya Gazeta journalist Hudoberdi Nurmatov (aliased Ali Feruz) will not be deported from Russia until the European Court of Human Rights considers the merits of his complaint, sources from the Russian Foreign Ministry’s information and press department told TASS on Wednesday in reply to the question about Moscow’s stance on the ECHR’s issuing a temporary ban on his removal.

"The decision of Moscow’s Basmanny court regarding Khudoberdi Nurmatov was reviewed at the Moscow city court. It ruled on August 8 that enforcement of the first-instance court’s decision must be suspended while the ECHR considers the merits of Nurmatov’s complaint," the Russian Foreign Ministry sources said, adding that the journalist will not be expelled until this is done.

The ministry said the decision of the Moscow city court is not final and may be challenged by the journalist’s defense.

Nurmatov’s case

Feruz was detained on August 1 near Novaya Gazeta’s Moscow office. On August 1, Moscow’s Basmanny District Court made a decision that Feruz, who is a citizen of Uzbekistan, should be expelled from Russia. He was also sentenced to a fine of 5,000 rubles ($82).

According to the court ruling, Feruz is to remain at Moscow’s Temporary Detention Center for foreign citizens until his sentence is implemented.

The court found the correspondent guilty under Section 18.8 Part 3.1 of the Russian Administrative Offences Code ("Violation of rules of entry into the Russian Federation or the order of residing (living) in the Russian Federation by a foreign citizen or an individual without citizenship ").

The Moscow City Court on Tuesday ruled to suspend the decision until proceedings on the journalist's complaint filed with the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) are over.

Last week, the European Court of Human Rights informed Russia’s authorities about a ban on expelling Ali Feruz until his compliant is entertained by the Strasbourg-based court.

According to the Russian Justice Ministry, the court notified the Russian authorities about its decision on interim measures Under Rule 39 of its regulations by prohibiting any forced displacement of Uzbekistan’s citizen Khudoberdi Nurmatov (Ali Feruz) from Russia’s territory until the European Court completes proceedings on the appeal from the above-mentioned individual, as well as by imposing a ban on restricting his access to Russian courts.

The Russian Justice Ministry promptly informed the country’s competent authorities about the European court’s decision.

A number of factors prevent Russia’s authorities from turning a blind eye to the fact that correspondent for the Novaya Gazeta newspaper Khudoberdi Nurmatov violated migration rules, Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters on August 3.

"We have information about this issue, but, let’s put it this way - the situation is very difficult and a number of factors prevent us from turning a blind eye to the violations that have occurred," the Russian presidential spokesman said.

Peskov added that Russia’s migration authorities and authorities in general had been keeping an eye on this issue.