Memorial Human Rights Defence Centre on the exclusion of members of its board located in Russia

11 April 2024

Source: Aleksandr Cherkasov, Facebook


The Memorial Human Rights Defence Centre has decided to exclude from membership of its board two individuals based in Russia, Oleg Orlov and Svetlana Gannushkina. This was done primarily for their safety. 

The government has already named Oleg Petrovich and Svetlana Alekseevna as “foreign agents.” Then Memorial itself was added to this register. Our organization’s website was blocked. Oleg Orlov is in a pretrial detention centre, awaiting the outcome of an appeal. 

Our decision was motivated by these and other circumstances leading to ongoing pressure on Russian civil society. 

Svetlana Alekseevna and Oleg Petrovich are no longer on the Centre’s board, but they remain members of Memorial, our friends, and our advisors. They understand their colleagues’ concerns for their safety.

As of today, Oleg Orlov is no longer co-chair of Memorial. Sergei Davidis is now the sole chair.


Translated by Nina dePalma