Russian Research Centre for Human Rights designated as ‘foreign agent’

posted 25 Oct 2015, 13:23 by Rights in Russia   [ updated 25 Oct 2015, 13:40 ]
22 October 2015

Source: (info)
On 20 October 2015 bureaucrats added the human rights organisation the Russian Research Centre for Human Rights (Мoscow) to the list of non-profit organisations that are ‘carrying out the duties of foreign agents,’ the Insider reports, quoting Interfax.

In explanation the Ministry of Justice stated that the Russian Research Centre for Human Rights (Мoscow) was apparently involved in ‘political activity’ in the form of ‘holding public events’ and in the ‘shaping of public opinion’.

The Russian Research Centre for Human Rights (Мoscow) works to cultivate and develop various forms of civilian oversight to ensure the observation of human rights in closed institutions such as in psychiatric hospitals, military bases, places of detention and children’s homes. The Centre is located in Moscow and hosts ten different organisations. A group of well-known human rights activists, who had been fighting for freedom in the Soviet Union since the 1960s, founded the centre in 1992.

Тhe Ministry of Justice of the Russian Federation currently has 97 organisations registered as so-called ‘foreign agents’

In a special statement the International Memorial Society emphasized that ‘the law on foreign agents is not in essence in keeping with the rule of law. There is not a single problem that this law could solve. The objectives of its authors were entirely political and opportunistic, and clearly its wording deliberately allows for a wide scope of interpretation. The law on foreign agents actually places a presumption of guilt on an artificially selected group of organisations.’

Non-governmental organisations in Russia have repeatedly expressed their opposition to the law and have filed complaints about it, even to the European Court of Human Rights. Human rights activists argue that the law is clearly of a discriminatory character and has a very negative historical context.

However, discrimination against non-governmental organisations in Russia continues.

Translated by Detzi Chocieszynski