A key witness in Russia’s attempt to extradite a Chechen leader from Britain described how he had been kept in a mud-filled pit for six days by Russian soldiers and tortured continuously before being paraded on television. Duk-Vakha Doshuyev, a former bodyguard of the Chechen leader Akhmed Zakayev, told Bow Street magistrates how he had been forced to sign a statement and learn it off by heart. He was then led before the cameras in fresh clothes to denounce Mr Zakayev as a warlord and kidnapper. “I haven’t the words, even in Russian, to explain to you what it felt like,” Mr Doshuyev said. His appearance for the defence is a proving to be a key part of Mr Zakayev’s battle to avoid extradition to Russia. Mr Zakayev, 44, who took office after elections in the breakaway republic in 1997 and became the main peace envoy of the rebel president Aslan Maskhadov, was arrested at Heathrow airport in December last year after winning a court battle against extradition in Denmark. Full Story
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