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Migrant Rights Defender Detained At Moscow Airport Amid Concerns She Could Be Deported To Uzbekistan

Migrant rights activist Valentina Chupik (file photo)

Russian security forces have detained migrant rights defender Valentina Chupik at Moscow’s Sheremetyevo airport.

Chupik who runs the migrant center Sunrise of the World, told Novaya Gazeta that authorities had seized her documents and notified her that she had been deprived of her refugee status since September 17. Chupik was also banned from entering Russia for 30 years, the newspaper reported.

The report said that Chupik was sent to a special detention center at the airport amid concerns that she could be deported to Uzbekistan where she could face torture.

"I am sitting in a special detention center at Sheremetyevo airport, Terminal F. It is not clear where they will take me," Chupik told Novaya Gazeta. She later stopped communicating, the newspaper said.

Chupik had returned to Russia from a trip to Armenia when she was detained.

The human rights activist moved to Russia from Uzbekistan after the 2005 bloody crackdown on anti-government protests in the eastern city of Andijon.

She was based in Moscow where she had been providing free legal assistance to migrants.

Russian authorities have not commented on her detention.

With reporting by Mediazona