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Rakhat Aliyev extradition unlikely: expert

13 july 2014, 13:27
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Rakhat Aliyev ©Yaroslav Radlovsky
Rakhat Aliyev ©Yaroslav Radlovsky

Extradition of Rakhat Aliyev to Kazakhstan is extremely unlikely, according to the Deputy Chairman of Birlik political party and former Commissioner for Human Rights in Kazakhstan Bolat Baikadamov, Tengrinews reports citing Megapolis.

“In addition to some established legal relations, there are also political traditions in Europe. According to these traditions, criminals are extradited with extreme reluctance to the countries that do not have a developed, I would even go further and say accomplished, democracy. Therefore, countries such as France, Great Britain, Italy and Austria do not extradite anyone to the countries of the former Soviet Union. At least, there has not been a single precedent to my knowledge," Baikadamov said in an interview.

The former ombudsman expressed confidence that the opinion of the European countries about Kazakhstan was biased. "Kazakhstan has been independent for over 20 years; over these years we have formed a good legal framework and justice system. Our Court has long since departed from the principles of the USSR judicial system. Therefore, I am sure that Kazakhstan can give an absolutely fair and humane treatment of criminals, even those like Rakhat Aliyev," Baikadamov continued.

Rakhat Aliyev is under arrest in Vienna since June 5 on suspicion of kidnapping and murdering two Kazakhstani bankers back in 2007. According to his lawyer Manfred Ainedter, the ex-Ambassador of Kazakhstan to Austria Rakhat Aliyev turned himself in voluntarily with an intention to cooperate with the Austrian law enforcement officials. 

Previously, a Kazakh court found Aliyev guilty of murder of the bankers Zholdas Temiraliyev and Aibar Khasenov, who went missing in 2007 and were found dead four years later. Aliyev was also charged with treason and preparing a coup d’etat. He was sentenced to a total of 40 years in absentia, since he had fled to Austria by that time.

Kazakhstan has requested extradition of the fugitive multibillionaire twice. However, the Austrian officials refused on both accounts alleging that Aliyev would not get a fair trial in his home country.

The press office of the Prosecutor General of Kazakhstan declined to comment on whether more extradition requests would be filed to Austria or not.

However, Baikadomov’s view suggests that Kazakhstan's requests would not change Austria's stance on the matter anyway, and no extradition is forthcoming in the forceable future. 

Writing by Dinara Urazova, editing by Tatyana Kuzmina


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