News of the Week

Week-ending 1 December 2023

Russia’s war against Ukraine

Displaced older people with disabilities in Ukraine are physically and financially unable to access adequate housing and care amid Russia’s ongoing invasion. Amnesty International, 1/12/23 

A military court in Rostov-on-Don on November 30 sentenced Ukrainian soldier Pavlo Zaporozhets to 12 years in prison on terrorism charges. RFE/RL, 30/11/23

A disabled Muscovite was sentenced to 10 days in jail for writing ‘No to war’ in the snow in Moscow’s Gorky Park.  RFE/RL, 30/11/23

Moscow’s Khoroshevsky District Court has fined computer science teacher Sergei Averyanov 40,000 rubles ($450) for writing on the blackboard during class a slogan ‘aimed at discrediting’ Russia’s military. RFE/RL, 29/11/23

Russia on 29 November arrested Jamala, the Ukrainian winner of the 2016 Eurovision Song Contest, in absentia for spreading ‘false information’ about the Russian army. The Moscow Times, 29/11/23

LGBT rights

Amnesty condemned the ruling by Russia’s Supreme Court recognizing the ‘international public LGBT movement’ as ‘extremist,’ as ‘shameful’ and ‘absurd’. Human Rights Watch said the decision ‘jeopardizes all forms of LGBT rights activism in the country.’ AI, 30/11/23; HRW, 30/11/23

Police in the Siberian city of Novosibirsk detained an LGBT activist, Aleksandra Sinko, while she was holding a single-person picket, which does not require advance permission from the authorities. RFE/RL, 28/11/23

Freedom of expression

The Committee to Protect Journalists condemned a Russian court’s decision on Tuesday to extend the pretrial detention of U.S. journalist Evan Gershkovich until January 30, 2024. CPJ, 28/11/23

Moscow city court on November 30 rejected appeals filed by theatre director Yevgenia Berkovich and playwright Svetlana Petriichuk against an extension of their pretrial detention. RFE/RL, 30/11/23

A court in Kazan extended until 5 February the detention of Alsu Kurmasheva, a veteran journalist from RFE/RL’s Tatar-Bashkir Service in custody since 18 October. The Committee to Protect Journalists joined 13 other press freedom and freedom of expression groups calling on U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken to declare Alsu Kurmasheva as ‘wrongfully detained.’ RFE/RL 1/12/23; CPJ, 29/11/23

A Moscow court on November 28 ordered the arrest of journalist Anna Loiko in absentia for at least one month on a charge of ‘publicly justifying terrorism.’ RFE/RL, 28/11/23

Russia’s Interior Ministry has prepared a draft law requiring foreigners who visit Russia to adhere to an ‘agreement of loyalty.’ The Moscow Times, 29/11/23

Aleksei Navalny

Aleksei Navalny, who is serving a total of 19 years in prison on extremism and other charges, said a new criminal case has been brought against him. RFE/RL. 1/12/23

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