On the night before the infamous “foreign agents” law came into force back in 2012, unknown individuals sprayed graffiti reading, “Foreign Agent! ♥ USA” on the buildings hosting the offices of three prominent NGOs in Moscow, including Memorial.
In early March 2013 the Russian government launched an unprecedented, nationwide campaign of inspections of thousands of nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) to identify advocacy groups the government deems “foreign agents” and force them to register as such. This list tracks the legal consequences of the law on dozens of NGOs.
Russia is set to bolster an ongoing draconian crackdown which is squeezing the life out of civil society by adopting the “undesirable organizations” law, said Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch.
The news reports that Evgeniya Chirikova, a leading Russian environmentalist, had moved to Estonia with her family brought back vivid memories of helping an internationally renowned photographer take portraits of her and a group of her fellow-activists in the Khimki Forest, just outside Moscow.