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

Trial upon the criminal case on Ivan Mikhailau is going to continue on February 1, 2010


 Today, on January 29, 2010, a court hearing of the case on Ivan Mikhailau - a parishioner of Messianic Jews community “New Testament” and the oldest son in a family with many children.

Ivan Mikhailau refuses military service upon his religious beliefs and demands assignment of civil (alternative) service to him, which goes along with provisions of Art. 57 of the Constitution of the Republic of Belarus.

Mikhailau’s claim was not heard either by the Ministry of Defense, Administration of the President or numerous other instances that Mikhailau’s family appealed to. A criminal case was brought up against Ivan for “evading draft to the military service” upon the provisions of the Belarusian Criminal Code’s Art. 435.1. Maximum punishment presupposed by this article is up to 2 years of imprisonment.

Ivan Mikhailau was taken to court under convoy from Zhodzina pre-trial prison where he has been placed since the moment of his arrest on December 20, 2009.

Admission into the room of the court hearing was allowed only for relatives of Mikhailau and representatives of mass-media. Mikhail Pashkevich – coordinator of the public campaign “For Alternative Civilian Service in Belarus” – has managed to conduct a human rights monitoring from the court room.

The case is considered by Judge Minich A.N., state prosecution is represented by prosecutor Cherepovich, Mikhailau’s defense is provided by lawyer Svetlana Gorbatok.

Prosecution demads that Ivan Mikhailau be considered guilty of criminal offence for evading the draft and claims criminal charges.

Defense insists on the verdict of non-guilty for Mikhailau, demands cessation of criminal prosecution and pleads for securing the constitutional right to alternative civilian service to her client.

Mikhailau does not plead guilty, he openly proclaims his wish to implement alternative civilian service and does not accept military service by any means.

At 13.05 a break in the proceedings was announced. Hearing of arguments is scheduled for Monday, 01.02.2010.

Consideration of the criminal case on Ivan Mikhailau will resume at 10.00 AM on February 1, 2010 in Minsk Regional Court (Lahoyski trakt, 5).

Monitoring group of the
Public Campaign “For alternative civilian service in Belarus”