Leading Russian civil rights group Memorial have this week condemned a recent legal case brought upon them by Russian authorities.
The case, set to reach court in November, regards a government attempt to liquidate the assets of Memorial’s umbrella organisation, who help support a number of human rights and campaign groups across the country. In response to the case officials at Memorial branded the legal proceedings as an ‘insult’, mentioning also the serious threat it posed to their continued work in Russia.
As a group Memorial have been leading in many human rights campaigns across Russia since the collapse of the Soviet Union. However, if a Russian court orders their organisation to liquidate Memorial have warned that many groups across Russia will be forced to reorganise and attempt to continue working independently.
The group works with partner organisations working across Russia and the former-Soviet states and aims to promote democracy and civil society while combating totalitarianism and political repression.
The decision to take Memorial to court has been seen as an attack on civil rights in Russia by some critics, and a further attempt by the Kremlin to silence dissenting voices in the country. Historically Memorial have often been seen as a thorn in the side of Russian authorities, acting against and investigating issues from Russia’s actions during modern and Soviet time.