On September 2, 2010, the European Court of Human Rights communicated the case Lakatosh and others v. Russia” complaint no. 32002/10 filed by lawyers of ADC Memorial (O. Zeitlina, A. Petrov). This is the first case dealing with the deportation of a person without citizenship from the territory of the Russian Federation, as well as on the conditions of the detainment of foreign nationals in the reception center in St.Petersburg. Currently there are about 200 people in similar circumstances, awaiting their deportation from the Russian Federation.
Applicants of the European Court Anna Lakatosh, Aladar Forkosh, and Pavel Gabor, at the office of ADC «Memorial»with workers of the organization and lawyer O. Zeitlina
The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees has expressed extreme interest in reviewing the case in the European Court, as it will help change the legal status of those detained for deportation, as well as stateless persons residing in the territory of the Russian Federation.
The applicants include A. Lakatosh, Pavel Gabor, and Aladar Forkosh, who as stateless persons were placed into holding cells at ul. Zaharaveskaya, 6, pending deportation from the Russian Federation for violating registration law. The cells usually held persons who are serving administrative arrest for a period of no more than 15 days.
The applicants were detained for a period of 1 year and 10 days, during which any prospects for their deportation were absent as the applicants were stateless persons of Ukraine, and Ukraine refused to accept them on it’s territory. This was well known to the authorities responsible for their detention and deportation. The applicants however couldn’t secure their release, as in Russia there are no mechanisms for periodic judicial review of the lawfulness of detaining persons for deportation, and for their release if they cannot be deported.
During their detainment, the applicants were held in cells in inhumane conditions, prohibited by Article 3 of the European Convention. Throughout the year, they were not taken out of the cell for a walk (with no more than five walks that year, lasting no more than 20 minutes). The cell they were held in contained a light bulb which could not be turned off, and had no desk, chair, stool, with food having to be eaten on their bed.
The court inquired the government of the Russian Federation on articles 3 and 5 (point 1f and 4) of the European Convention. The deadline for responses is January 17, 2010.