Imagine a bomb falling on your house right now, destroying all you hold dear, or a masked gang bursting in and bundling away your husband or wife, never to be seen again. How would you feel? What would you do?

Take a closer look at these photographs because behind each one lies a real family, with a real horror story of kidnap, torture and suffering.

But, thanks to work by the European Human Rights Advocacy Centre (EHRAC) in Hendon, each one also represents a case of justice triumphing over oppression.

The images are part of an exhibition being held to mark the tenth anniversary of the centre, based at the University of Middlesex.

Set up in 2003, its eight-strong team works with victims in former Soviet Union states who have suffered shocking cases of human rights violations.

One photograph shows a man crouched on the rubble of his former home in the Chechnyan village of Kogi, which was destroyed in 1999 when it was bombed by two Russian military planes, killing several people, including two children. In 2008, EHRAC and human rights organisation Memorial brought the case on behalf of 27 former residents and the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) awarded them damages of almost €1,500,000.

Another image shows Magomed Khashiyev and Roza Akayeva, whose relatives were tortured and executed, and Libkhan Bazaeva, whose cars were destroyed, during conflict in the Chechen capital of Gronzy, on the day their judgement was passed at the court in Strasbourg in 2005. It ruled Russian security forces had acted with utter disregard for the risk to civilian life.

Sayid Magamedov, who took the photos of Kogi, says: “I first heard about the tragedy of Kogi when some women were talking about it, crying. Their story was marked by a sense of helplessness and powerlessness at the hands of the state, the helplessness of animals.”

He spent years gathering evidence for their case and on hearing they had won “had tears in his eyes” and says: “Two days later in the village of Terekli-Mekteb, when I read out the decision to the applicants, one of the local councillors said this was the first time in history of the Nogais that justice had triumphed.”

Over the last decade the centre has expanded its work to Georgia, Azerbaijan and Armenia and taken 310 cases to the ECHR, with judgements in 102 cases and more than €6,500,000 being awarded in moral damages to those affected.

Director of EHRAC and Middlesex University Professor of Law Philip Leach says: “We try to make cases that are not only significant in terms of the victims but also make an impact on the law and policies in that country.”

He adds: “For me the worst cases are the disappearances. That this is happening in this century is appalling but it doesn't make the news much. It will usually involve a group of armed men turning up at someone's house in the middle of the night and not saying who they are or why they are taking someone or where, and in many cases these people are never seen again and their bodies are never found.”

He hopes the exhibition will raise awareness of the centre’s work and show justice is being provided to some of the most vulnerable people on the continent.

It is free to attend and bidding will be available on a silent auction of the photographs to raise money towards the centre’s work.