Appeal for Anastasia Denisova.

Tord Björk | ESF,Propaganda,Repression,right wing | Wednesday, April 14th, 2010

Governor of Krasnodar krai
Tkachov Alexandr Nikolaevich
Krasnodar, Krasnaya, 35.
Tel/fax: +7 (861) 262-57-16,
fax: +7 (861) 268-35-42

with Copy to:

Plenipotentiary of President of the
Russian Federation to South Federal District
Ustinov Vladimir Vasilyevich
Rostov-on-Don, Bolshaya Sadovaya, 73
tel. +7 (863) 249-99-43, fax +7 (863) 249-99-47

APPEAL

We are extremely concerned about the situation with human rights activists in Krasnodar krai and, namely, the criminal charges filed against Anastasia Denisova.
Anastasia Denisova is our colleague, a 27-year-old human rights defender and an expert in counteraction against xenophobia, racism and intolerance. Anastasia is the president of Krasnodar krai non-governmental organization Youth Group for Tolerance “ETHnICS”, a member of the Coordinating Council of the International Youth Human Rights Movement, an employee of Human Rights Centre “Memorial”, Analytical center SOVA and co-coordinator of the ”Green Alternative” group in the region of Krasnodar.
We know that Anastasia has done a lot in the sphere of non-violent antifascism, both practically and theoretically. For several years Anastasia Denisova and NGO “ETHnICS” have been subdued to harassment and inhibition of professional activities (presence of outsiders during the Federal Registration Service check-up; groundless claim of damages from Tax Inspectorate, as a result of which the activities of the NGO were brought to a halt; regular delays and examination at crossing the border of the Russian Federation; prevention of her departure to the OSCE meeting in Warsaw, etc.). This high-pressure situation culminated in late 2009 when the criminal charges were brought against Anastasia Denisova. At the same time the criminal case is centered around examination of computer equipment which does not belong either to Anastasia Denisova or NGO “ETHnICS” and as far as we are informed which was confiscated with the violations of the Russian Federation legislation. The criminal case is based on the expert advice the validity of which is highly doubtful.
Systematic prevention of Denisova’s activities allows us to suggest that this criminal case is again a form of pressure on behalf of the authorities of the region. We are amazed that monitoring manifestation of xenophobia, and discrimination of ethnic minorities, cultural and educational projects that Anastasia does – are not welcomed and supported by the authorities of Krasnodar krai. We express out deep concern about the rise of right-wing extremism in Europe and in Russia and call for respect for people who decide to act against it.
At the same time mass media is covering other incidents of harassment of human rights and civil activists in Krasnodar krai. These cases instigate a very unpleasant atmosphere around Krasnodar krai, which seriously influences the image of the Russian Federation, especially on the eve of Olympic Games in Sochi in 2014.

In this respect we call upon for:

1.    personal control of lawfulness of the court trial against Anastasia Denisova
2.    assistance to ensure secure functioning of civil society institutions in Krasnodar krai.

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