Moscow PEN Centre and the Free Word association demand the immediate release of Ilya Azar
Photo: Novye Izvestiya, Facebook

29 May 2020

The human rights organisations Moscow PEN Centre and Free Word [Svobodnoe Slovo] that bring together writers and journalists have issued a statement on the detention of journalists in Moscow.

Source: Novye Izvestiya

The statement by the human rights defenders says:

We are outraged by the 15-day jail sentence handed down under administrative law to journalist and municipal councillor Ilya Azar for holding a single-person picket and by the detention of the journalists Sergei Smirnov, Tatyana Felgengauer, Aleksandr Pliushchev, Viktoriya Ivleva, Anastasiya Lotareva and Alisa Ganieva, who all held single-person pickets outside the headquarters of the Moscow police department in Azar’s support.

Single-person pickets do not require permission from the authorities. And the self-isolation regime cannot be grounds for trampling the right to freedom of expression guaranteed under the Constitution.

We demand the immediate release of all those detained!

Translated by Simon Cosgrove

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