Pavel Chikov: Linguistic experts from the Investigative Committee found incitement to protest, to contact lawyers and other criminal activity in DOXA’s video

14 April 2021

by Pavel Chikov, head of the Agora International human rights group

Source: Moscow Helsinki Group [original source: Telegram]

Today in Basmanny district court during a hearing on choosing a measure of pre-trial restraint for DOXA journalists, investigators submitted the conclusion of a forensic linguistic assessment as a result of which, among other things, a criminal case was initiated against the journalists. From the assessment by the Forensic Centre of the Investigative Committee of Russia it became known that the investigation had issued a resolution on the appointment of an expert examination on 26 January. It was on that day that Roskomnadzor had called for the removal of a video by DOXA journalists that talked about the inadmissibility of restricting the right of young people to protest and the illegality of expulsion from educational institutions.

Experts ‘analysed’ that very video, as well as two posts of the editorial board of the magazine on Instagram, designed to look like cards: one about what to take with you to the rally, and the second on the topic of why it is illegal to expel students for participating in the protest. Experts from the Investigative Committee’s Forensic Centre believe that the following forms of incitement are contained in the YouTube video and the Instagram cards:

  • to end the intimidation of students, threatening them with expulsion for participation in protests, and to stop putting pressure on teachers and parents;
  • to take part in rallies and protests related to the arrest of Aleksei Navalny, and if that is not possible, express your civic position in another way: become a volunteer in a human rights organisation or create some form of student media;
  • to save the contact details of lawyers, report any detentions; 
  • if you wish, donate funds to support the magazine DOXA

As evidence, the decision cites quotations such as the following:

  • ‘we appeal to the authorities and administration of educational institutions: stop intimidating students and school children’
  • ‘do not be afraid and do not stand aside’
  • ‘the authorities have declared war on youth, but we are the youth and we will definitely win!’
  • ‘do not resist the demands of the police’
  • ‘do not resist or insult police officers, try not to touch even them.’

Translated by Mercedes Malcomson

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