Tag Archives: Memorial

EU deplores liquidation of Memorial NGO

Brussels 13.11.2021 “The European Union deplores the Russian General Prosecutor’s decision to demand the liquidation of the International Historical Educational Charitable and Human Rights Society Memorial and the Memorial Human Rights Centre, an important independent voice in Russian civil society dedicated to the protection of human rights and the history of political repression in Russia” reads the statement by the EU top diplomat Josep Borrell on legal steps against NGO Memorial.(Image: Saint-Petersburg, Russia)

“The move to liquidate Memorial is yet another case of using Russia’s so-called “foreign agents” law to further shrink the space for independent activism and to curtail historical scholarship and critical debates”.

“The EU has repeatedly condemned the Russian legislation on “foreign agents”. This law runs counter to Russia’s international human rights obligations and commitments. The EU expects Russia to uphold its international human rights obligations”.

“Russian authorities must reverse this decision and stop the unabated crackdown on civil society and independent media. Memorial is an internationally respected NGO and one of the oldest in Russia. Its activities remain central to the defence of human rights and serve as a bulwark against attempts to manipulate the historical memory of political repression. Understanding the atrocities of the past is a value that must enjoy support and protection. The dismantling of Memorial would be an irreplaceable loss for the Russian people and the rest of Europe”.

EU calls Russia to release human rights defenders

The Chechen Republic court confirmed the detention of Oyub Titiev, head of the Memorial Human Rights Centre in Chechnya. Titiev was arrested on questionable drug possession charges on 9 January and has been detained since then.

Russia’s international commitments include an obligation to protect human rights defenders. The European Union expects the Russian authorities to abide to these commitments so that the cases against Mr Titiev and Mr Dmitriev can be dropped, and Mr Titiev immediately released” – the European External Action Service statement of the spokesperson says.

Titiev arrest appears to be directly connected to his human rights work for Memorial. The organisation has been targeted in recent months in the North Caucasus, among others through arson attacks on its office in Ingushetia and on Titiev’s lawyer’s car in Dagestan, as well as an attack against Mr Sirajutdin Datsiev, the Head of Memorial’s office in Dagestan.
Respected historian and representative of Memorial in Karelia, Yuri Dmitriev, has also faced questionable accusations, and on 14 June had his acquittal overturned by Karelia’s High Court, sending the case for retrial and prolonging Mr Dmitriev’s uncertainty over his fate. The dubious charges brought against him have already led to his detention for a period of 13 months.