OVD-Info Weekly Bulletin No. 192: First stop for Navalny

7 March 2021

OVD-Info is a Moscow-based NGO that monitors politically-motivated arrests and prosecutions in Russia. Each week OVD-Info publishes a bulletin with the latest news, which is translated here. To receive the mailing in Russian, visit here.

Illustration by Lena Krivenkova for OVD-Info

Hi! Navalny has been transferred to a jail in the Vladimir Region, a Novaya gazeta journalist has been arrested in Moscow, and the Office of the Prosecutor General is attempting to falsify evidence.

Navalny moved to Vladimir Region jail. The politician’s announced via Instagram that he is now being held in the Kolchugino jail. According to his lawyer Vadim Kobzev, Navalny will be held on remand until his sentence for slander against a veteran enters into force. Meanwhile, Mediazone has reported torture and killings taking place inside Vladimir Region Prison Number 6. It is likely that Navalny will serve out his sentence in one of the prison camps in the region.

OVD-Info lawyer reports falsification of evidence. According to Dmitry Zakhvatov, a lawyer defending people facing criminal charges of vandalising the Prosecutor General’s office, the date written on the repairs quote was changed, with the new date written right on top of the old one. Zakhvatov believes that the prosecution is trying to pass off an old contract between the Prosecutor General’s office and the building maintenance firm as a new one. Moreover, the defence has footage from the scene of the incident, showing that the paint – which is the basis of the investigation’s charges – was simply washed off with water, and without the need for any repair works.

Journalist Ilia Azar detained for 15 days. Moscow’s Tverskoy District Court has found Azar guilty of a second breach of the laws governing public rallies, because of a Facebook post about the picket on 13th July 2020 in support of Ivan Safronov. The journalist was also fined 150,000 roubles in connection with the protest on 20th March 2020 against amendments to the Constitution.


Today, our analysts bring you not one, but two reports.

Report on defence and access to justice with relation to freedom of assembly. OVD-Info has published an adapted version of our message to the UN Special Rapporteur, who will read a report on the right to peaceful assembly during the 47th session of the Human Rights Committee. It focuses on bringing perpetrator of rights abuses to justice in the context of freedom of assembly, as well as on the central role of lawyers in achieving this.

Report on assault against police officers. We have analysed court rulings under the article on assault against representatives of the authorities (number of convictions, percentage and length of prison sentences) vis-à-vis protesters in 2011 and 2020, and compared them with broader statistics on the use of this article. As it turns out, the courts are hasher and more willing to hand down prison sentences in cases relating to protests. Have a look here.


Every day we take phone calls on our hotline, publish news and features about political repression in Russia, release guidance, reports and podcasts. Our lawyers handle criminal cases and submit complaints to the ECHR, while our IT-team works day in, day out to make our services more user-friendly. All of this can happen thanks to your support. Please sign up to make a monthly donation to OVD-Info. That way we can continue work and to send you your favourite mailing and more.

Translated by Judith Fagelson

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