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Moscow Court Suspends Home Demolitions In Rechnik

Houses being demolished in Rechnik in January.

Houses being demolished in Rechnik in January.

MOSCOW -- A Moscow court has ordered that the demolition of private homes in the Rechnik community be suspended, RFE/RL's Russian Service reports.

Moscow City Court spokeswoman Anna Usachyova told journalists on February 10 that no more houses would be demolished while the Prosecutor-General's Office is reviewing the lawfulness of the original court decision to demolish the homes.

Moscow authorities began demolishing houses in the riverside settlement outside of Moscow last month. The owners of the properties in Rechnik were forced to leave their homes.

They said the rulings ordering the destruction of their homes are illegal since the homeowners were not informed about the issue when it was being discussed in court.

On February 4, President Dmitry Medvedev ordered the Prosecutor-General's Office and the presidential administration to investigate whether the demolition of the houses in Rechnik was lawful.

The next day, officials from the Russian Lawyers Guild, the Federal Union of Russian Lawyers, and the Russian Public Council announced the establishment of the Public Judicial Center in Moscow to give advice to help citizens protect their property rights.

Vasily Diksuar, the vice president of the Russian Lawyers Guild, told journalists that there were flaws in most of the court rulings that were made to demolish the Rechnik homes.