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After 30 Years, ‘De-Registered’ Along with Other Foreign Groups

(Berlin) – Russia’s Justice Ministry on April 8, 2022 canceled the registration of Human Rights Watch, along with Amnesty International and 13 other offices of foreign nongovernmental organizations and foundations, Human Rights Watch said today.…
The headquarters of Russia's Ministry of Justice in Moscow, December 4, 2017.
News

Raids, Detentions, Prosecution of Anti-War Activists, Independent Journalists

(Berlin) – Russian authorities have cracked down on journalists, human rights defenders, and activists in an effort to silence any criticism of the war in Ukraine, Human Rights Watch said today. The authorities have arbitrarily detained, judicially…
Russian demonstrators attend a protest against the war in Ukraine, in Lenin Square, Novosibirsk on March 2, 2022.
News

Baseless Verdict Adds 9 Years to Alexei Navalny’s Prison Sentence

(Berlin) – The conviction of the imprisoned Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny on new trumped-up charges on March 22, 2022, reflects the Russian government’s intensified crackdown on dissent and free expression since the start of Russia’s large-…
Alexei Navalny, a jailed opposition leader, during a court session in Pokrov, Vladimir region, Russia, March 22, 2022.
News

Thousands Arrested on March 6; Protesters Abused in Detention

Update: On March 13, police detained, at times brutally, more than 850 people allegedly for participation in peaceful anti-war protests. On March 15, the mayor of Moscow, where the majority of people were detained, lifted all major…
Police officers detain a protester in Manezhnaya Square, Moscow, Russia on March 6, 2022.
News

‘Discrediting’ Armed Forces, Calling to End the War, Backing Sanctions Become Crimes

Update (March 23, 2022): In the three days after the law’s adoption on March 4, Russian authorities opened at least 60 cases on the administrative offense of “discrediting Russian armed forces,” the vast majority against peaceful anti-war protesters.…
A flag flies on a Russian State Duma building in Moscow, Russia. February 2022.
News

Authorities Threaten Independent Media over War Reporting

An update of this report through March 3, 2022 is available here. (Berlin) – Russian authorities have threatened to fine or block 10 Russian independent media outlets if they do not delete publications about the war in Ukraine, Human Rights Watch…
Journalists work in the news room of the independent Dozhd (Rain) television channel in Moscow, Russia.
News
Russia is a country where thousands are detained at peaceful demonstrations and even single-person picketers are thrown behind bars — all in the name of public safety and even public health.  In this country however, there is one…
Men carrying a banner reading “Putin and Kadyrov are Russia’s foundation”. Grozny, Chechnya, January 2016.
News

Dissenting Voices and Activists Forced into Exile

(Moscow) – Russian authorities unleashed a full-fledged witch hunt on civic groups, independent media and journalists, political opposition and other critics in the run-up to the parliamentary election in September 2021, Human Rights Watch said today…
Police detain protesters at a rally against the jailing of opposition leader Alexei Navalny in St. Petersburg, January 31, 2021.
News

Regarding abduction style detentions of relatives of persons who publicly criticized the governor of Chechnya, Ramzan Kadyrov

January 7, 2022  Dear President Putin, In the last week of December 2021, dozens of relatives of five activists who have dared to criticize the leadership of the Chechen Republic were abducted in Russia, and the fate and whereabouts of many of…
News

Blocking, Oppressive Laws, Pressure on Tech Companies

(Moscow) – Russian authorities redoubled their efforts in 2021 to repress internet freedoms, Human Rights Watch said today. The government blocked popular censorship circumvention tools, experimented with novel censorship technologies, expanded…
A young man wearing a face mask checks his mobile phone at the State Russian Museum, Saint Petersburg, May 26, 2020.
News

Joint statement by Russian and international human rights groups in support of Memorial

Russian authorities’ move to shut down Memorial, one of Russia’s oldest and most prominent civil society organizations standing up for human rights, working to commemorate victims of Soviet repression, and providing a platform for free debate and artistic…
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. 
News

Deposed Political Leaders and Journalists Remain Detained

(Bangkok) – The Myanmar junta’s recent prisoner releases are limited in scope and do not reflect a broader change in the military’s respect for human rights, Human Rights Watch said today. On October 18, 2021, the State Administrative Council…
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News

End Crackdown on Independent Voices

(Berlin) – Russian authorities have taken punitive action against three local human rights defenders and their organizations in recent days, Human Rights Watch said today. The authorities imposed arbitrary, draconian bureaucratic penalties against the…
The Russian flag flies on a courthouse building in St. Petersburg, Russia, March 15 2020.
News

Privacy, Political Targeting Concerns; Lack of Regulation, Data Protection, Oversight

(Moscow) – Russian authorities continue expanding their use of facial recognition technology across the country, with no regulation, oversight, or data protection and against the backdrop of misidentification reports, Human Rights Watch said today.…
A surveillance camera operates in Red square near the Kremlin in Moscow.
News

Crimean Tatar Leader Arrested on Bogus Criminal Charges

In today’s Crimea, to be a member of the Crimean Tatar community is to be a target for the authorities. In the early hours of September 4, Russia’s security services raided the house of Nariman Dzhelyal, a deputy chairman of the Crimean Tatar…
Nariman Dzhelyal in Crimea in 2019. 
News

Release Journalists Wrongfully Detained, Sentenced

(Bangkok) – Myanmar’s military junta should stop prosecuting journalists and end its assault on independent media, Human Rights Watch said today, releasing a video about the media crackdown. Since the February 1, 2021 coup, Myanmar’s junta has…
Anti-coup protesters hold a banner that reads "What are these? We are Yangon residents!" as they march during a demonstration in Yangon, Myanmar on Tuesday April 27, 2021.
Video
(Bangkok, July 23, 2021) – Myanmar’s military junta should stop prosecuting journalists and end its assault on independent media, Human Rights Watch said today, releasing a video about the media crackdown. Since the February 1, 2021 coup, Myanmar’s…
News

“Foreign Agents” Law Leads to Criminal Penalty

Correction: This text has been corrected to reflect the location of the 2019 police raid. (Moscow) – A court in Sochi, Russia, has convicted a prominent human rights defender on criminal charges related to the country’s “foreign agents” law,…
Semyon Simonov
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