Analytics and Interview

On 16 January 2015 late in the evening the website of the Ministry of Justice published a statement that the NGO Committee Against Torture had been added to the register of non-profit organizations designated as ‘foreign agents’.
Tanya Lokshina is the Russia program director at Human Rights Watch and Honorary Participant of International Youth Human Rights Movement: As the crisis in Ukraine escalated this spring, the Kremlin’s vicious crackdown on civil society also escalated. Space for independent civic activity in Russia is shrinking dramatically, but international policymakers and the media have been understandably too distracted to do much about it. Since early spring, it seems as though every week brings a new pernicious law or legislative proposal.
Earlier this year, the correspondent of Youth Human Rights Movement from Germany Jakob Stürmann interviewed Konstantin Baranov, member of the Coordination Council of the International Youth Human Rights Movement. They discussed so called “law against homosexual propaganda” and the overall situation of LGBT in Russia.  

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Oleg Sentsov, Olexander Kolchenko, Hennadiy Afanasiev and Oleksiy Chyrniy have been held in Russian jails for two years already under fabricated charges of ‘terrorism’. We consider it being necessary to express solidarity with those who are persecuted due to their pro-Ukrainian views, civic stand and desire for freedom in Russia-annexed Crimea.
Helsinki Committee of Armenia has published “Human Rights in Armenia 2014” Annual Report. The report reflects on the Right to Freedom of Speech, Freedom of Peaceful Assembly and Association, Torture, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment, Political Persecutions, Freedom of Conscience and Religion, The Rights of the Child, Protection of Labor Rights.
«We have a few questions for you,» a border guard told Sinaver Kadyrov, a Crimean Tatar activist, at the Armyansk checkpoint in northern Crimea on Jan. 23. Kadyrov was on his way to Kherson, in southern Ukraine, to fly to Turkey for medical treatment. It was the beginning of an ordeal that ended with a local court expelling him from Crimea, his home of almost 25 years.

Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority It is time to sit back and reflect.

Mark Twain


Youth Human Rights Movement

The Congress of the International Federation for Human Rights in Yerevan (Armenia): when will the national defense mechanisms be effective?

Дата публикации: 

The 37th Congress of the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) took place in Yerevan from April 6 till April 8. FIDH is the oldest human rights international organization that comprises 164 international human rights organizations on five continents.
The Federation Congresses are traditionally preceded by open international activities. And this year it was the Forum «Justice: new challenges» (The Right to an Effective Remedy before an Independent Tribunal). The Forum and Congress were symbols of paying tribute to Natalia Estemirova, Russian human rights defender, assassinated on July 15, 2009.
The Congress gathered together about 400 participants – both the representatives of Federation members and human rights activists who are not the official members of the Federation but work within the declared topics.
The Forum was designed as the occasion for debates, exchanges of experience and analyses on various themes related to the right to an effective remedy before an independent jurisdiction, at national level as well as accessing regional and international justice systems. A special focus will be given to the new problems and challenges. One of such cases was the situation in the Chechen Republic. The representatives of the Human Rights Center «Memorial» Ms. Ekaterina Sokiryanskaya (HRC “Memorial” / Russia) and Mr. Kirill Koroteev (FIDH Mission delegate / Russia, France) presented a report. It was declared that due to the bad work of national defense mechanisms the people in Chechnya don’t practically have any other defense means as to go to the European Court of Human Rights. But the use of this mechanism takes up to 10-15 years and is (besides a financial compensation) just a means of moral assistance for those who lost their relatives or suffered during the conflict or from any clashes with employees of the law-enforcement agencies or authority officers.    
There were discussed different regional human rights protection systems such as the European Court of Human Rights, the Inter-American System of Human Rights Protection, the African regional mechanisms and others.
For  several times there was announced such a point of view that the existence of such mechanisms gives hope that people will be able to get an aid in the specific cases. Their actions will lead to improvement and change of the national justice systems. It should be also noted that the Congress was attended by many representatives of Armenian justice system and public organizations. Much attention was given to the situation in Armenia and around it. So, the 37th Congress of the International Federation for Human Rights in the person of its president Ms. Belhassen Souhayr called for political prisoners to be released from prison in Armenia. Also as a mark of respect to memory of the Armenian Genocide victims and for member organizations efforts consolidation in Armenia and Turkey of the Civil Society Institute (CSI, Armenia), Human Rights Association (IHD, Turkey) and Human Rights Foundation of Turkey (HRFT) Congress supported their joint Declaration that was accepted within the scope of the event.
The Congress was visited by Anna Dobrovolskaya in the capacity of a guest, a representative of YHRM (International Human Rights Movement).
The YHRM seeks for ways of wider cooperation with FIDH. At the moment it is considered the possibility of becoming the Federation member. Besides taking part in the plenary sections of the Congress Anna Dobrovolskaya also met Correspondents and Participants of the YHRM in Armenia and discussed the ways of the YHRM Network development in Armenia.

The YHRM information service