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

Court of Soviet Region of Gomel discharged claims against Yauheni Yakavenka


On April 8, 2010, Court of Soviet Region of Gomel discharged claims against Yauheni Yakavenka (25 y.o.) who was accused of failure to appear to draft activities to military service.

On February 11, 2010, Yauheni Yakavenka was found guilty of violation of Art. 25.1.3 of the Administrative Code of the Republic of Belarus in failure to appear to draft activities to military service and sentenced to a fee equivalent to USD 60.

Yauheni Yakavenka did not plead guilty, he demanded that all charges be withdrawn from him and right to alternative service provided.

On March 12, 2010, Gomel Oblast Court nullified the decision of the Soviet Region Court and submitted the case for a new consideration.

Nevertheless, a criminal case on Art. 435.1 of the Criminal Code of the Republic of Belarus (“evasion from activities on draft to the military service”) that has been initiated against Yakavenka, and has already been submitted into court.

“No doubt that the fact I was discharged in the administrative case is a plus. But whether this will influence consideration of the criminal case – it is too early to say. Though I hope, of course, to be acquitted in this case as well. But we cannot know what position the court would take” – Yakavenka commented.

This decision of the Soviet Region Court of Gomel is a first decision on acquittal in a range of cases initiated against young people who demanded alternative service. The hearing on Ivan Mikhailau that was to take place today, on April 9, 2010 is again postponed to one week and will take place on April 17. Dzmitry Smyk is also awaiting new consideration of his case.

Monitoring group
Public Campaign “For Alternative Civilian Service in Belarus”