Podcast No. 73. Simon & Sergei – with Sergei Davidis

This week our guest on the podcast is Sergei Davidis, a member of the board of the Memorial Human Rights Centre and director of the Centre’s programme in support of political prisoners.

The questions discussed in the podcast include: Sergei Davidis’ recent prosecution and jailing [‘administrative arrest’]; conditions of detention; application to the European Court of Human Rights; numbers of detentions and administrative and criminal cases following this year’s protests; Evgeny Roizman, former mayor of Ekaterinburg; Aleksei Navalny; Amnesty International; politics and human rights; ECtHR; right of assembly; freedom of association; Anti-Corruption Foundation; application of extremism law; new legislation and human rights; future of human rights in Russia.

The podcast is in Russian. You can listen to the podcast in full here:

You can also listen to the podcast on Podcasts.com,  SoundCloud,  Spotify  and  iTunes

The music, from Stravinsky’s Elegy for Solo Viola, is performed for us by Karolina Herrera.

Given the length of the podcast, we have also divided it into three parts that you can listen to separately.

Part One. Arrest – Jailing – ECtHR – Protests – Personnel at Detention Centre – Other detainees:

Part Two. Selectivity of Prosecutions – Sergei Smirnov – Evgeny Roizman – Dmitry Bykov – Aleksei Navalny – Political polemics – Deterioration in human rights protections – New legislation:

Part three: Amnesty International – FBK – Extremism – Belarus – the Future:

Sergei Nikitin writes on Facebook: “Sergei Davidis, a member of the board of Memorial Human Rights Centre, was seized in the entryway of his home. The explanation for such an act of gallantry by the police is simple: according to the Russian authorities, notification of an event is now considered to be organization of an event. If we are talking about the kind of event that the authorities in their own jargon call ‘unsanctioned’, then a person who reposts information about the protest will receive a visit early in the morning. Sergei spent eight days in a special detention centre where those sentenced to administrative detention are held. He was given a total of 10 days, but two of those 10 days were spent in police custody. Simon Cosgrove and I are people with little prison experience (mine is richer than Simon’s, but I won’t go into that now), so we were interested in what Sergei had to say. Sergei Davidis was good at building relations with cellmates who had nothing to do with Article 20.2 of the Code of Administrative Offences. “None of them like the authorities, they don’t approve of them, but they don’t want to get involved in the fight.” He successfully conducted – according to him – explanatory work to show what political institutions are and what political tools exist. “I did not see any aggression from the staff of the detention centre. Except for one moment, though it was not really aggression but overzealous performance of duty: one of the officers told me that wearing a T-shirt with the slogan ‘No to political repression’ in their honorable institution was unacceptable. Our podcast proved an interesting conversation with an interesting interlocutor on many topics, including Amnesty International’s infamous decision to strip Navalny of his title of prisoner of conscience.”

Simon Cosgrove adds: “If you want to listen to this podcast on the podcasts.com website and it doesn’t seem to play, please download by clicking on the three dots to the right. A summary of some of the week’s events in Russia relevant to human rights can be found on our website here.

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