This week our guest is Svetlana Alekseevna Gannushkina, human rights defender, chair of the Civic Assistance Committee, a member of the board and director of the Migration and Law Network of the Memorial Human Rights Centre. Until June 2012 (from 2002) Svetlana Alekseevna was a member of the Presidential Human Rights Council.
The issues we discuss in our podcast include: when and why Svetlana Alekseevna took up human rights work; about the work of the Civic Assistance Committee and the Migration and Law Network; the policy of the Russian authorities towards asylum seekers and how this can be compared with that of other countries; the law “on foreign agents”; the experience of working on the Presidential Human Rights Council; the difference between human rights protection and politics; and the future of human rights in the Russian Federation.
This podcast is in the Russian language. You can listen to it here:
The music, from Stravinsky’s Elegy for Solo Viola, is performed for us by Karolina Herrera.
Sergei Nikitin writes on Facebook: “I remember 18 years ago when Svetlana Alekseevna, standing next to me in Spaso-House and watching George W. Bush Jr. approach us inexorably, told me she wanted to avoid a handshake with the US President. It was probably not a dislike, but a natural modesty that perfectly matched the courage and bravery of Gannushkina, this wonderful human rights activist. Last Saturday Simon Cosgrove and I talked to Svetlana Alekseevna and she remembered how a sense of personal dignity made her a human rights activist back in her school years. “All my 10th grade I dedicated myself to fighting with the school director,” she remembered. Already after graduating from school, having bought a copy of the Labour Code of the RSFSR, Svetlana Gannushkina was able to defend her friend, who had been illegally dismissed from the Historical and Archival Institute – the girl was restored to her job. This was just the beginning of human rights activities for Svetlana Gannushkina, chair of the Civic Assistance Committee, a member of the board and head of the Migration and Law Network of Memorial Human Rights Centre. We had a very interesting conversation and it is available in our new podcast.”
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