Civil society activist intending to fly to Sochi detained at airport

posted 7 Feb 2014, 03:06 by Rights in Russia   [ updated 7 Feb 2014, 04:46 ]
5 February 2014

Source: (info)
Dmitry Berdnikov, leader of the civil society movement ‘Against crime and lawlessness’ was detained this morning at Kazan airport while going through passport controls.

‘I was about to fly to the Olympics in Sochi, said Berdnikov in a call to the Kazan bureau of the Novaya gazeta newspaper. I have tickets to the games. I had already checked in my luggage and went through registration, but when I was boarding the plane I was stopped by police officials. They told me that one of the pages of my passport was damaged. Now I am at a police station. The plane has already taken off’.

Earlier, the organisation of which Berdnikov is director announced that it had opened a public committee in Sochi to counter crime and lawlessness during the preparations of the Olympics and the Games themselves.

Novaya gazeta reports that Dmitry Berdnikov has been arrested several times during protest actions. Last October he received an unexpected acknowledgment from the law enforcement agencies when the new Prosecutor of Tatarstan, Ildus Nafikov, held a first meeting clinic for civilians jointly with a 'representative of civil society’. Dmitry Berdnikov was invited as a representative, and the Republic’s Prosecutor made mention of this on his website.

Translated by Eva Cukier