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Criminal investigation opened on suicide of activist in Rostov detention center

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The Investigative Committee has initiated a criminal case regarding the incitement of Anatoly Berezikov, a Rostov activist, to commit suicide. The First Department human rights project reported this development on June 21.

According to a ruling received by the First Department, it has been determined that Anatoly Berezikov died from "mechanical asphyxiation" after hanging himself in his cell on June 14. The Investigative Committee has opened a criminal case on the incitement to suicide.

During the investigation, it was discovered that Berezikov did not have any cellmates, despite initial statements made by law enforcement officials to his relatives suggesting otherwise. Berezikov had repeatedly complained to his lawyer about being subjected to torture and death threats. Human rights activists argue that he did not have any intention to take his own life.

Anatoly Berezikov died while in custody at a detention center in Rostov-on-Don during his third administrative arrest. He had been placed under administrative arrest for distributing anti-war leaflets.

Lawyer Irina Gak was informed about the activist's death on June 14 when she came to visit him. The detention center staff stated that Berezikov had committed suicide. Human rights activists have launched a campaign to raise 500,000 rubles ($5,974) for an investigation into the circumstances surrounding the death of the Rostov activist.



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