Vladimir Putin’s decision in Russia is very symbolic. On Tuesday, December 28, the Russian Supreme Court announced that the memory of the NGO that had been a pillar of the struggle against oppression in modern-day Russia and a defender of the memory of the victims of the coup would be dismantled.
The decision comes at the end of a year, marking the growing persecution of people, NGOs and the media, who are considered critical of President Vladimir Putin, who has been in power for nearly 22 years.
Established in the aftermath of the Soviet Union by dissidents, including Andrei Sakharov, winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, the monument aims to shed light on the millions of victims of Soviet crime. For its defenders, it is now subject to an increasingly pronounced stimulus by the Kremlin, a view of history that glorifies the power of the Soviet Union and downplays the over-characterization of Stalinism.
“Decision to dissolve Memorial International and its regional branches”, The voluntary charity wrote in its Telegram account on Tuesday. A few seconds ago, Judge Alla Nazarova said “Accept the lawyer’s request” We need to disband this NGO. In early November, he was accused of violating the monument and asked to be disbanded “Formally” Duties of his position as a “foreign agent”. This label – reminiscent of the “enemy of the people” in the Soviet Union – refers to companies that act against Russian interests because they receive foreign funds.
The decision to “send Russia back to its past”
“This is a wicked, unjust decision.”, Defense Attorney, Maria Icemond responded. “A force that fears memory will not reach democratic maturity”, Also wrote a memorial to Auschwitz’s Nazi extermination camp on Twitter, while Amnesty International condemned the NGO “Shame” Made in memory of the victims in the Soviet camps.
The monument has been exploring Soviet refinements for more than thirty years and exposing contemporary repression, especially Mr. Identifies the repression of the Putin regime. Prior to the ruling, the group had said it would do its best to continue its work despite the ban. “Memorial International is sending Russia to its past to dismantle, and increasing the risk [nouvelles] Repressions “, Assessed before the court mMe Easmond.
In court on Tuesday, attorney Alexei Zafiarov thwarted a systematic attack targeting a voluntary charity. “Create a false image of the USSR as a terrorist state”, From “Dirty Memory” World War II and the search “Rehabilitate Nazi Criminals”.
In the international arena, the European Council has condemned “Disaster news for civil society”, Jean-Yves Le Drian, President of French Diplomacy “Anger” And his “Care”, This deserves dissolution “Terrible loss to the Russian people”. U.S. Ambassador to Moscow John Sullivan condemned “Sad attempt to suppress freedom of expression”.
The voluntary charity will find “legal ways” to continue its activities
Memorial attorney Tatiana Glouchkova told Agence France-Presse (AFP) on Tuesday afternoon that the NGO was going to appeal to the Supreme Court’s appeals panel. The NGO also announced that it would find “legal ways” to continue its activities.
But the legal issues of the memorial did not end there. In another case, the government seeks to dismantle its center for the protection of human rights, which specializes in violations committed in its view by the contemporary Russian government. He is accused of apologizing “Terrorism and Terrorism”, In addition to violations of the law on “foreign agents”. The case is set to go to trial in a Moscow court on Wednesday.
NGO lawyers have condemned the unsubstantiated, disproportionate and political harassment, and the memorial is one of the latest victims of a long list of NGOs, protesters and the media who have been prosecuted in recent months.
At the beginning of 2021 – and for two and a half years – the Authorities have arrested Alexei Navalny, the Kremlin’s number one rival, Then banned his organization in June “Terrorism”. Many of his supporters were re-arrested Tuesday. Dozens of people, voluntary organizations that protect human rights or sexual minorities, and the independent media have been accused of being “foreign agents” or extremists.
Moscow has launched an offensive on the digital front. Penalties against web heroes Do not delete anti-related content. Thirty years after the collapse of the Soviet Union, as described by Vladimir Putin, the conflict between the two visions of Russian history illustrates the problems of the monument. “The biggest geopolitical disaster” du XXe Century.
For its activities, the monument has been under pressure for a long time and has already paid a heavy price. In 2009, her manager Natalia Estemirova was abducted in Chechnya and later hanged. One of its historians was Yuri Dmitriev He was sentenced Monday to fifteen years in prison For a business “Sexual Abuse” He was denounced as a stunt aimed at punishing him for his research on Soviet terrorism.
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