European Network on Statelessness: Victory in the Constitutional Court: #LockedInLimbo and the Pointless Detention of Stateless Persons in Russia

by Stephania Kulaeva, Director of ADC Memorial

On 23 May 2017, the Constitutional Court of the Russian Federation issued a decision in the case of Noé Mskhiladze, which mandates strict judicial control and oversight over the length of the detention of stateless people, a defining moment for thousands of stateless people living in Russia who are held in detention without the prospect of their cases being resolved.

In the case of Noé Mskhiladze human rights defenders disputed the constitutionality of norms allowing for extended detention of stateless people for the purpose of expulsion from the Russia Federation. The Constitutional Court ruled that the Administrative code of Russia has to be changed in order to ensure the possibility for stateless individuals to appeal the state’s decision to detain. In addition courts will be obligated to define specific timeframes within which expulsion must occur, while those already in detention may have the legality of their detention reviewed after three months.

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