Andrey Rylkov Foundation
for Health and Social Justice

Human Rights Activists Demand Release of Margarita Charykova

On 14 March 2013, at the doorsteps of the Russian Federal Drug Control Service (FDCS) activists of the Andrey Rylkov Foundation organized a one person picket to attract attention to the case  of Margarita Charykova.  24-year-old Margarita has spent three months in the Moscow’s Matrosskaya Tishina pre-trial detention center without adequate medical assistance for her severe health condition. Picket participants were holding a hand written poster: “FDCS is killing Margarita Charykova”.  Activists demand that the authorities release Margarita.

 Russian human rights activists are demanding that the authorities release 24-year-old Margarita Charykova from Moscow’s Matrosskaya Tishina pre-trial detention center. Charykova’s mother claims that her daughter who was born without a rectum, is “rotting alive” since she is not receiving the right medical help. Her lawyers say Charykova was arrested in December 2012 for possession of 20 grams of an amphetamine pain-killer.

On Tuesday, Svetlana Sidorkina, a lawyer with the Agora human rights association, called on the European Court of Human Rights to assist in the release of Charykova who is suspected of possessing psychotropic substances. Sidorkina said Charykova’s life and health were being threatened, and that a young woman with such a serious health condition could not stay at the pre-trial detention center.

Charykova’s mother, Erika Kaminskaya, wrote a letter to the Presidential Executive Office, saying her daughter had been arrested by officers from the Federal Drug Control Service on December 11 for possession of the pain-killer, which was mixed with an amphetamine, a home-made psychotropic stimulant.

Kaminskaya said her daughter’s treatment at outpatient clinics produced only temporary results, that the young woman could not afford to undergo total reconstructive surgery, and that she had started taking drugs regularly. According to Kaminskaya, Charykova has always tried to lead a normal life despite her health problems and many operations. She has been working since she was a teenager, and has been quite active. She has tried to pay her own way and tried to conceal her health problems from others.
If found guilty of drug trafficking under the Russian Criminal Code, Charykova could face up to ten years in prison.

Kaminskaya said her daughter’s health had seriously deteriorated at the detention center and that Charykova had not receive the required medical assistance. Charykova, who is suffering from edema, gained ten kilograms, and had to be taken to the prison hospital.

The certificate proving Charykova’s disability has to be issued in Novosibirsk where her daughter is registered, Kaminskaya noted. Anna Karetnikova, a member of Moscow’s Public Oversight Commission, visited Charykova on Tuesday and said her poor health was obvious. Charykova told Karetnikova that she was taking the medication which was confiscated from her to ease the pain. Kristina Belousova, Federal Penitentiary Service spokesperson, said Charykova had received the medical assistance she needed, and that she could stay at the detention center. She added that her condition did not warrant a release, and that Charykova’s health was satisfactory.

Category Categories: Access to treatment in Russia, Drug policy in Russia | Tag Tags: , , , | Comments 1 comment »


One comment to “Human Rights Activists Demand Release of Margarita Charykova”

  1. Heather Davis-Ray says:

    Remember Vasily Alexanian? Same prison, same medical neglect.

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