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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Ingushetia Opposes Jury Trials

Murat Zyazikov, the president of Ingushetia, spoke out Monday against the introduction of jury trials in his region, saying they could help alleged terrorists escape punishment.

He said those accused of involvement in a raid on police installations in the North Caucasus republic in June must be tried by judges.

About 90 people, mostly police and security officers, were killed in the attack.

Zyazikov said the cases of 13 suspects already have been sent to court and about 40 others would soon follow.

"Those who are accused of involvement in the attack are asking to be tried by a jury," he said at a news conference.

"But relatives of the victims are categorically against it, pointing to previous cases when suspected criminals were freed and continued their evil deeds."

Zyazikov said Ingushetia would only be ready for the introduction of jury trials in five to 10 years.

Jury trials existed in Russia before the 1917 Bolshevik Revolution, and they gradually have been reintroduced in recent years.

Human rights activists hope that jury trails will help liberalize the court system, widely criticized for repressive trends and rampant corruption.