News of the Day: 5 August 2021

The Moscow Times: Russian authorities have blocked access to exiled former tycoon Mikhail Khodorkovsky’s rights group website and news outlets, which have been critical of the Kremlin ahead of next month’s high-stakes elections.

Human Rights Watch: With Russia’s September 19 parliamentary elections fast approaching, every day begins with new reports of arbitrary arrests, interrogations, and other attacks on critical voices. Today there were three new victims of the Kremlin’s war against free expression. Independent news outlets MBKh-Media, Open Media, and Open Rights announced they would shutter after the governmental communications oversight body, Roskomnadzor, blocked their websites.

RFE/RL: Russian opposition politician Lev Shlosberg of the Yabloko party and his colleague Nikolai Kuzmin have been returned to the list of candidates running for deputy in the Pskov regional parliament.

RFE/RL: Liya Akhedzhakova has for years been one of Russia’s most popular stage actresses, and her latest performance at Moscow’s Sovremennik (Contemporary) theater has garnered plaudits from an audience comprising many members of Russia’s intelligentsia and business elite.

RFE/RL: A Moscow court has found U.S. investor Michael Calvey and six co-defendants guilty of embezzlement in a high-profile case followed closely by the international business community.

The Guardian: A lesbian couple and their family, who were featured in an advert for a Russian supermarket chain that led to a national scandal have fled the country after facing online abuse and death threats.

The Moscow Times: Support for erecting a monument to Soviet dictator Josef Stalin has nearly doubled in the past decade, a survey by the independent Levada Center polling agency said Wednesday. According to the results, 48% of Russians said they support a Stalin statue and 20% are against the idea.

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