Aleksandr Podrabinek

Aleksandr Podrabinek i
s a human rights activist and journalist, and a founding signatory of the 2008 Prague Declaration on European Conscience and Communism, that called for "Europe-wide condemnation of, and education about, the crimes of communism." Born in Elektrostal outside Moscow, after graduating from a nursing school, Aleksandr Podrabinek worked as a paramedic for the ambulance service in Moscow. He became active in the human rights movement in the Soviet Union in the early 1970s. His book, Punitive Medicine, exposed the abuse of psychiatry in the country in 1977. He took part in the Soviet underground samizdat journal Chronicle of Current Events and was a member of the Moscow Helsinki Group. Arrested and convicted for criticizing the Soviet system in 1978, he was sentenced to five years of exile in Siberia. In 1981 he was convicted a second time and sentenced to three and a half years in a labour camp for distributing samizdat literature and publication of the English version of his book. From 1987-2000 he was chief editor of Ekspress-Khronika, and chief editor of PRIMA-News from 2000-09. He is a member of the political council of the Solidarity movement. Since 2005 he has been a columnist for Novaya gazeta. He regularly publishes in Grani.ru, Ezhednevnyi zhurnal, and the Institute of Modern Russia. He is Moscow correspondent for Radio France Internationale.
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