The applicants lived in the village of Gekhi-Chu, Chechnya. On the evening of 6 February 2000, the village came under fire from Russian military forces. On 7 February military helicopters and planes fired missiles on the village. The applicants took shelter along with other neighbours in the first applicant’s basement. When the firing stopped Russian military servicemen ordered everyone into the courtyard, took aside four young men from the village (relatives of the applicants) and took them to another address on the same street. The applicants heard gunshots and later found the four men dead with gunshot and knife wounds on their bodies, along with the body of a fighter who had been shot earlier in an exchange of fire. A criminal investigation was instigated; however, it was suspended in December 2000 due to a failure to identify the culprits. The applicants did not learn of the suspension until November 2005. The applicants complained of violations of Art. 2 (right to life) Art. 13 (effective remedy) and Art. 14 (discrimination).
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