Human Rights & Public Liberties

Human Rights & Public Liberties

Published on: 13 Jan, 2021

Ex-Guantanamo prisoner Mingazov to be forcibly repatriated to Russia

Published on: 7 July, 2021


Guantanamo Camp VI, 2016 [Reuters]

Guantanamo Camp VI, 2016 [Reuters]

The former Guantanamo detainee Ravil Mingazov is expected to soon be forcibly repatriated from the UAE to Russia.

According to UN human rights experts Mingazov will face a substantial risk of torture should he be repatriated. Mingazov fled Russia for fear of religious prosecution.

Mingazov is a Muslim Tartar, He was imprisoned in Guantanamo Bay prison camp for 15 years without being charged. He was transferred to the UAE in January 2017.

According to Mingazov’s family the conditions in the UAE have been worse than the conditions at Guantanamo.

Speaking to Al Jazeera, Moazzam Begg a former Guantanamo prisoner and director for outreach at the London-based advocacy organisation CAGE said: ‘I knew Ravil Mingazov when we were held together in Bagram in 2002 and tortured by the Americans. Like me, he was very worried about his family. We both went to Guantanamo but I returned home in 2005. Ravil remained in Guantanamo for 14 years without charge or trial. During that time, his family came to the UK – including the son he’s never seen. That child is now 19 years old.’

Conditions in Dubai

Begg further stated: ‘Instead of being reunited with his son, Ravil was sent to UAE where he believed he’d be freed and resettle and restart his shattered life. However, after 5 years of being imprisoned in Dubai in conditions others ex-Gitmo prisoners have described as “worse than Guantanamo”,  Ravil is facing the prospect of being repatriated to Russia where he almost certainly faces more persecution – as has been the case for other Russian ex-Gitmo prisoners.

If that wasn’t bad enough, there are 18 other former Guantanamo prisoners from Yemen who have also endured Ravil’s fate – two decades of prison without charge or trial.

It is now time the US intervenes and brings an end to this never-ending suffering and finds homes where they can live their lives in peace and safety.’