Open Russia announced its closure

News
Open Russia announced its closure
Open Russia announced its closure
27 May 2021, 14:18PoliticsPhoto: facebook.com
All branches of Open Russia* in the regions will be closed, the organization itself will be liquidated, activists will be expelled from its membership, said the director of Open Russia, Andrey Pivovarov (pictured).

The decision to close the public organization was made by the Open Russia Council.

“We are doing this in order to avoid criminal prosecution”, - Pivovarov’s statement was quoted by Novaya Gazeta.

According to the politician, the risk for people who share the beliefs of "Open Russia" is very high: on the eve of the elections to the State Duma, "the authorities are ready to do anything to prevent independent politicians". Earlier, the Ministry of Justice refused to register the organization in the Russian Federation. The activists intended to challenge the refusal in court, however, due to the closure of all branches, the claims against the Ministry of Justice will be withdrawn.

The reason for the dissolution of the public organization was a law introduced to the State Duma providing for a six-year term of imprisonment for the supporters of "Open Russia"* simply for their beliefs.

“We do not need new criminal cases against our supporters”, - Pivovarov said.

Open Russia was founded in 2001 on the initiative of the ex-head of Yukos, Mikhail Khodorkovsky. In 2017, the Prosecutor General's Office of the Russian Federation added Open Russia to the list of undesirable organizations. Soon after that, open persecution of the supporters of "Postcard" began. In particular, the Rostov activist, mother of many children, Anastasia Shevchenko, was put under house arrest for two years, forbidden to see her seriously ill daughter. In the midst of the mother's prosecution, the girl died.

In February of this year, the court sentenced Shevchenko to four years of probation under Article 284.1 of the Criminal Code for cooperation with an undesirable organization. Anastasia Shevchenko became the first in Russia sentenced under this article. At the same time, the state prosecution asked to sentence Anastasia Shevchenko to five years in a general regime colony.

The surviving second daughter of Shevchenko complained that the investigator mocked her mother, did not let her see the dentist, so she tried to pull out the aching tooth herself. In the bedroom of Anastasia Shevchenko, the security forces secretly installed a hidden camera, watching her every movement.

Earlier, the Anti-Corruption Foundation (FBK**) and the Foundation for the Protection of Citizens' Rights (FZPG **), recognized in Russia as non-profit organizations-foreign agents), and Navalny's headquarters network**, created by opposition politician Alexey Navalny, announced the closure due to the persecution.

* The Prosecutor General's Office recognized the organization as "undesirable" on the territory of Russia.

** Listed by Rosfinmonitoring in the list of organizations involved in terrorism and extremism.

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