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

They can when they want: a meeting against police arbitrariness was held without abuse on May 15 in Moscow


On May 15 at 7 pm in the Novopushkinsky Square a meeting against police arbitrariness was organised. According to different estimates about 400 to 500 people assembled, mainly anarchists, antifascists, human rights activists as well as representatives of opposition parties and movements. The meeting became logical continuation of the “Week against police arbitrariness” on which we reported recently.

The participants held in their hands posters with inscriptions like “Down with this police state!”, “No lawlessness!” or “Are you on the extremists’ list?”. The activists made speeches from a small truck in the middle of the square.

A significant moment was the declaration made by the Libertary initiative against police arbitrariness: “Today we want to announce the beginning of a widespread campaign against illegal activities of staff members of the police. If you think that your rights were infringed by policemen, call 291-62-33 or 202-22-24 or visit our website. Together we can defend you and make law enforcement bodies work conscientiously.”

By the end of the meeting the activists performed a scene: a part of the people represented the police with peak-caps and batons, the others – civilians and simple passengers. The police arrested young people under different pretexts (like belonging to an extremist group) in an improvised prison from which they returned slogged and dressed in another way, holding up sign on which was written: “Was arrested. Accidentally hit by electric shock 40 times.” or “Was arrested. Fell down the stairs.” After this medals were conferred upon the heroic policemen because of their excellent performance of duty.

The police decided not to stay but to gladden the attendants with the following performance: in some moment they let pass some people of a strange look with sign “Anarchy”.

The meeting ended at the prescribed time without any complaints of the policemen which were lead by the chief of the department of public relations of the Moscow city police department, general Biryukov. However, four persons returning from the meeting were detained at the metro-station Paveletskaya and conveyed to the police department “Zamoskvoretskoe”. They did not get to know the reasons for this and shortly after this they were let off. According to the arrested, the ground for their detention was their appearance.

The event was organised by the Civil movement against police arbitrariness which was joined by the Moscow Helsinki Group, the movement “For Human Rights” and the Libertary initiative against police arbitrariness.