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Azimzhan Askarov achieves relaxation of his detention regime

Human rights activist Azimzhan Askarov, sentenced to life in prison, achieved relaxation of regime of his detention. His lawyer Valerian Vakhitov told 24.kg news agency.

According to him, Azimzhan Askarov, after transfer from the Bishkek pre-trial detention center 1, was placed in the so-called strict regime penal colony, which provides for only three short-term visits and one long-term visit, as well as three short telephone conversations and an hour and a half walk in the fresh air every day.

«Concessions are usually applied to life-sentenced people in five years after they were sent to the penal colony. Azimzhan Askarov has been imprisoned since 2010. We have never asked for relaxation of the regime for him. He does not complain about anything, but we must remember that he is an elderly person and the restrictions does not improve his health. The State Penitentiary Service granted the motion. The number of hours spent in the fresh air, as well as visits and parcels has been increased for Askarov,» the lawyer said.

He added that the client, who recently had a fever and, according to some reports, the symptoms of community-acquired pneumonia, is recovering and feels satisfactory.

The Supreme Court of Kyrgyzstan did not send the case of the sentenced to life in prison Azimzhan Askarov for review due to newly discovered evidence. Thus, the appeal of Askarov’s lawyers was denied on May 13.

On December 2, 2019, the Supreme Court decriminalized a number of counts and commuted the punishment of the human rights defender under certain articles. However, the main article of the charge «Complicity in Murder» of the Criminal Code, under which Azimzhan Askarov received the life sentence, remained.

Azimzhan Askarov is accused of inciting ethnic hatred and murder of a policeman during the June events in the south of the republic in 2010.