Andrei Yurov: “On Civil Confrontation in Russia and Respect for Human Rights"

posted 18 Dec 2011, 09:31 by Rights in Russia   [ updated 18 Dec 2011, 09:37 ]
Source: (info), 13/12/11 

· Right of assembly  · Freedom of association  · Articles by human rights defenders  · Protests 

Andrei Yurov, Youth Human Rights Movement: “In the circumstances of mass civic protests, human rights organizations and civic groups must assume the initiative for monitoring the observance of the whole corpus of human rights, and prevent the emergence of violence on the streets…” 

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1. Citizens have the right to monitor the actions of government in their own country. 
In general terms, this may be almost the only basic right and – at the same time – duty that citizens have in relation to a country and its government. In countries with established democratic traditions this right can be realized peacefully and effectively both during elections (not in the form of political conflict or in the expression of certain political preferences, but in the form of monitoring election procedures, the rules of the game, and the observance of minimal standards and principles of law - and in elementary political decency), and also (what is still more important!) between elections in the form of the most various civic initiatives and institutions, making government at least to some degree transparent and able to take note of the criticism make by citizens. Precisely in order to ensure these functions in any contemporary state protection of such fundamental rights as freedom of assembly and association, freedom of speech and access to information is necessary; and it is precisely these rights that prevent “civil discontent” growing into “civil confrontation” and “civil conflict”. [Read more]