Target: Yaranmyrat Yazmyradov, Public Prosecutor
Goal: Prevent the transfer of a prisoner to a facility where he would almost certainly face torture and ill-treatment
Mansur Mingelov, who is currently serving a twenty-two-year sentence for a number of charges, has been notified by authorities in Turkmenistan that he will shortly be moved to Ovadan-Depe Prison. Mingelov served the beginning of his sentence at Ovadan-Depe, a high-security prison, before transferring to his current facility. While at Ovadan-Depe he faced multiple instances of torture and ill-treatment. Sign the petition and urge the authorities not to transfer Mansur Mingelov.
Mingelov maintains his innocence of the charges he was convicted of, and numerous outside groups have expressed concerns that he did not have a fair trial; he only met his state-appointed lawyer on two occasions, was not allowed to switch lawyers during his trial, and was given limited access to his family. In prison, Mingelov has become an anti-torture activist, documenting instances of torture, particularly those acts committed against members of the Balcoh ethnic group. He has recorded eleven such acts in Mary province.
Turkmenistan’s use of torture is widely acknowledged outside of the country, but inside the country many people do not speak up out of fear. Amnesty International has recorded a number of acts of torture taking place in Turkmenistan, including “pushing needles under fingernails; electric shocks; asphyxiation using a plastic bag or gas mask with the air supply cut; sexual violence; forcibly administering psychotropic drugs; beating with batons, truncheons, or plastic bottles filled with water; punching; kicking; food and drink deprivation; and exposure to extreme cold.”
The terms of Mingelov’s sentence dictated that he spend a year in a high-security prison, which he did. There is no reason to transfer him back to Ovadan-Depe, and his safety and well-being will be in grave danger if the transfer goes through. Sign the petition and urge the authorities not to transfer Mansur Mingelov back to Ovadan-Depe Prison.
Dear Prosecutor General,
Please do not go through with Mansur Mingelov’s transfer back to Ovadan-Depe Prison. If he is transferred there, he will be at high risk for torture and other ill-treatment.
Mansur Mingelov was convicted after an unfair trial and sentenced to twenty-two years in prison, with one year to be served in a high-security prison such as Ovadan-Depe. While he was housed at Ovadan-Depe, Mingelov was tortured, and according to reports he collected from other inmates, he was not the only one.
Mingelov’s potential transfer back to Ovadan-Depe violates the terms of his sentence and also violates a number of international human rights standards which prohibit authorities from knowingly putting a person in a situation where they are likely to face torture. It is very likely that the move is an attempt to silence Mingelov, who has become an anti-torture activist since his imprisonment and has documented several instances of torture.
I urge you to do the right thing. Stand up for human rights and cancel Mansur Mingelov’s transfer to Ovadan-Depe Prison.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Vzb83 via Wikimedia Commons