Committee Against Torture files for bankruptcy

posted 9 Oct 2015, 03:22 by Rights in Russia   [ updated 12 Oct 2015, 08:11 ]
5 October 2015

The human rights organisation Committee Against Torture has filed for bankruptcy in a commercial court in Nizhny Novgorod region. The non-profit was unable to pay the enormous fines it was given after it was labelled a “foreign agent,” according to the official legal website 'Pravosudie', RAPSI, the Russian Legal Information Agency, reports.

This is stated in the files of arbitration cases of “Justice”, the State Automated System of the Russian Federation, communicates RAPSI, the Russian Legal Information Agency.

The date of consideration of the application has not been determined.

In August, Ivan Zhiltsov, a member of the non-profit Committee for Prevention of Torture, told the media that the organisation had sent a packet of documents to the Nizhny Novgorod branch of the Ministry of Justice of the Russian Federation, which included a copy of the conference minutes, the organization’s founding documents, and an announcement of liquidation.

Earlier, the head of the organization, Igor Kalyapin, had reported that the Committee Against Torture would cease to exist from the 3rd August, and that the Committee for Prevention of Torture would operate in its place.

Kalyapin emphasised that the only reason that the Committee Against Torture was forced to close down was because of the law on “foreign agents,” or more accurately, the part which requires organisations to declare they perform the function of a “foreign agent.”

In January of this year, the Ministry of Justice of the Russian Federation put the Committee Against Torture on the list of non-profit organisations that were “foreign agents.” The organisation held that the prosecutor’s decision was illegal, made on the basis of a misinterpretation of relevant law, and appealed to the courts.

On 3rd April, the Sovetsky district court dismissed the appeal against the ruling by the Nizhny Novgorod region prosecutor, on the basis of which the Committee Against Torture had been put on the “foreign agent” list by the Ministry of Justice. The Committee Against Torture appealed against the court’s decision. On 8th July, Nizhny Novgorod regional court dismissed the appeal.

The Committee Against Torture is a well-known Russian non-profit organisation working to protect human rights wiht headquarters in Nizhny Novgorod.

Translated by Kate Goodby