A court in southern Russia’s republic of Dagestan has ruled a mother of three unfit for custody due to her “immoral” tattoos and piercings, according to media reports.
The summer 2020 ruling against Nina Tseretilova is based on Instagram posts submitted by her ex-husband during their custody battle, the Komsomolskaya Pravda tabloid reported Friday.
“It follows from the submitted photos and videos that N.Sh. Tseretilova leads a lifestyle that does not comport with the rules and norms of the behavior of a mother with many children,” it states.
“There are tattoos with words on her body,” the Makhachkala city court decision reads, according to Komsomolskaya Pravda.
Tseretilova, 33, called the ruling “complete absurdity” in a July 30 Instagram post, hinting at but not directly mentioning the court’s decisionmaking based on her physical appearance.
“The region’s mental peculiarities need to be taken into account, specifically not to post any Stories or express my own opinion and to keep quiet playing a ‘weak woman’,” she wrote.
Tseretilova, who was subjected to female genital mutilation at age 7 and betrothed at 14, is reportedly appealing the decision with the Supreme Court. She says she has not seen her daughter and two sons in the past three months, including at their school or her ex-husband’s address.
Tseretilova’s ex-husband maintained on social media that he won the custody battle because she had allegedly attended night clubs and neglected the children, according to Komsomolskaya Pravda.
Activists have regularly accused regional authorities of infringing on women’s rights in Russia's North Caucasus.
The predominantly Muslim republic of Dagestan has previously brandished its defense of traditional values by banning women from a public pool as well as canceling the screening of a "gay" BTS concert movie and a “debauched” anime festival.
In 2016, three Miss Russia contenders from North Caucasus republics including Dagestan became targets of online bullying over their contest photos in swimsuits.