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

A pillow fight in Minsk finished by mass arrests


Dozens of youths arriving at the building of the National Library of Belarus on Thursday evening with pillows were arrested by police.

A youth organization called Historyka (Historical Studies) intended to stage a mass pillow fight there to mark the 600th anniversary of the Battle of Grunwald that took place on July 15, 1410, with the Kingdom of Poland and the Grand Duchy of Litva (Lithuania) beating the knights of the Teutonic Order.

The city authorities banned the event. Minsk authorities stated that «since the statement "Historica" about holding of mass action doesn't correspond to the requirements of part 5, art. 5 of the law «About mass actions », the Minsk City Executive Committee disallows the action holding in the platform near the building of National Library».

Around 70 people were apprehended, but a brief pillow fight was still staged, near the subway station.

One of the organizers Andrey Kim, prominent civil activist and YHRM Correspondent spent the whole night at the police station. On the 16th of July he was fined by the Pervomayskiy district court for organizing an unsanctioned action.

The first mass pillow fight was staged in Minsk on July 15, 2009 on the occasion of the 599th anniversary of the Grunwald battle in defiance of the authorities’ ban. Another pillow fight took place in September to celebrate the anniversary of the 1514 Orsha Battle; the city government sanctioned the event in which around 400 young people took part.