Constitutional Court refuses to consider complaint by Russian Memorial Society

posted 1 Feb 2015, 08:10 by Rights in Russia   [ updated 1 Feb 2015, 10:50 ]
26 January 2015

Source: (info)
The Constitutional Court has refused to consider a complaint by the Russian Memorial Society over the law on civil society associations. Radio Svoboda’s correspondent in St Petersburg, Tatiana Voltskaya, reports.

Memorial has been trying to query the validity of the law on civil society organizations, or more precisely, the provisions concerning the territorial area where Russian civil society organizations are permitted to work, but the Constitutional Court has refused to consider the application from Memorial.

The Court’s published statement declares: “Given that the consideration of the case brought by the applicant has not been completed by the Russian Supreme Court, the Constitutional Court of Russia has no grounds for reviewing the given complaint. This does not deprive the applicant of the possibility of submitting the question regarding the validity of the disputed norm after completion of the hearing of the case in the relevant judicial instances.

Nonetheless, it was important for Memorial to receive an answer from the Constitutional Court on the law regarding civil society organizations before the suit brought by the Ministry of Justice for liquidation of the organisation had been heard by the Supreme Court, ie before 28th January 2015.

Memorial’s representatives pointed out that they consider absurd the current enforcement practice by which organisations that are independent legal entities, voluntarily acting as branch divisions of Memorial, are not recognised as such.

Therefore the applicant requested that the disputed provisions of the relevant law be recognised as unconstitutional.

Translated by Frances Robson