Kovalev addresses the European Parliament after accepting
the Sakharov Prize. Strasbourg, 16 December 2009
hro.org, December 18, 2009
Ladies and Gentlemen,
On behalf of the Memorial organisation,
I would like to thank the European Parliament for
its high accolade – the Sakharov Prize.
We at Memorial see this award as relating
not only to our organisation. We take the view that,
through us, the prize is being bestowed on the whole
human rights community in Russia, and indeed more
widely – on the entire section of Russian civil
society sympathetic towards defenders of human rights.
For forty years now – first in the Soviet Union
and then in Russia – human rights defenders
have been standing up for ‘European’,
that is to say, universal values. This struggle has
never been easy; in recent years it has become tragic,
as it increasingly claims the lives of the best, the
most active and the most fearless.
I am sure that, in awarding the Sakharov
Prize to the Memorial organisation, the European Parliament
had them in mind, first and foremost – our dead
friends, comrades-in-arms, kindred spirits. This prize
belongs by right to them. And the first name I should
cite is that of Natalya Estemirova, human rights defender
and fellow member of Memorial, murdered this summer
I cannot go on without mentioning
other names too: the lawyer Stanislav Markelov and
journalists Anna Politkovskaya and Anastasia Baburova,
murdered in Moscow, ethnologist Nikolai Girenko shot
in St Petersburg, Farid Babayev, murdered in Dagestan,
and many others – sadly, it is a list that could
go on for a long time. I ask you to honour the memory
of these people by standing.
murderers of Farid Babayev, the leader of the Dagestan
branch of YABLOKO, can be released
Press Release, December 25,
The relatives of leader of Dagestan
YABLOKO and human rights activist Farid Babayev murdered
in 2007, expressed their concern that the defendants
had been ruining the case and that the killers would
get freedom soon. The key witness of the plaintiffs
who had seen the killer suddenly retracted his testimony.
On January 20, 2009, the Supreme Court
of Dagestan ruled out that Rasil Mamedrizayev, a citizen
of Dagestan, was guilty of murder and sentenced him
to 16 years of imprisonment. The second of the culprits
Seferali Sefemerzoyev accused of complicity in the
murder was acquitted.The plaintiffs
appealed this decision in the Supreme Court of the
Russian Federation. The barrister of Mamedrizayev
also appealed the decision demanding acquittal for
his client. On June 4, 2009, the Supreme Court of
Russia abrogated the previous decision and send the
case to the Supreme Court of Dagestan to a new trial
by a new composition of the court.
The only witness who gave testimony
in the case under a fictitious name of Telman Akayev
had seen the murderer running from the site of the
crime with a gun in his hand. The witness memorized
the face of the killer and pointed at Mamedrizayev
during the investigation. Akayev confirmed his testimony
at one of the trials standing behind the screen. After
that the barrister of the accused Suleiman Azuyev
threatened the witness stating that he and his relatives
are well-known to the defendants. Despite multiple
applications to the court the Investigation Committee
of the Public Prosecutor’s Office failed to
provide steadfast protection to the witness. The witness
missed several sessions of the court and later there
emerged information that he left for Uzbekistan together
with his family.
anti-ecological policies of Russia’s authorities
Resolution of the 15th congress
of the YABLOKO party No 253, December 24, 2009
The Russian United Democratic Party
YABLOKO regards the supreme goal of a democratic state
as ensuring of flourishing of the country, the well-fare
and the highest living standards for the citizens.
One of the most important functions of the government
is ensuring of ecological safety of the citizens and
protection of nature as a national resource which
is regarded as a public asset.
The political and economic system of modern Russia,
its supreme political and economic administration
grossly violates the principles of ecological policies
determined by the Constitution of the Russian Federation:
the rights of the citizens to a friendly environment,
reliable information on its condition, recovering
of the damage incurred in ecological violations, rational
use and protection of natural resources and careful
attitude to the natural riches that should be regarded
as a foundation for life and performance of the citizens.
1. The policies of Boris Yeltsin – Vladimir
Putin – Dmitry Medvedev created a system of
underdeveloped periphery capitalism in Russia almost
entirely basing on the maintenance and development
of environmentally unfriendly productions left from
the Soviet times. Neither the government nor business
merging with the authorities pay any serious attention
to the safe environment, as it is connected with reduction
of their super profits. Consequently, Russia logically
and inevitably has found itself on the periphery of
rapidly developing innovative world.
of the referendum on Okhta-Centre to appeal St.Petersburg
parliament’s ban on the referendum in court
Press release, December 24,
Initiators of a referendum on Okhta-Centre
to appeal St.Petersburg parliament’s ban on
the referendum in court. This announcement was made
by Chair of St.Petersburg YABLOKO and one of organisers
of the referendum Maxim Reznik at the Ekho Moskvi
“This time the Legislative Assembly
of St.Petersburg demonstrated absolute absence of
any respect to the city dwellers saying that the legislators
can not give a definition what a historical outlook
of St.Petersburg is. But I am certain that shall find
counter-measures against another slap on the face
as regards the citizens,” Reznik said.
the situation in the Northern Caucasus
Resolution of the 15th congress
of the YABLOKO party No 252, December 24, 2009
The Russian United Democratic Party
YABLOKO once again expresses its deep concern on the
political and economic situation in the Northern Caucasus.
Despite victorious reports on stabilisation
of the situation in the Northern Caucasus the policies
of the Russian authorities completely failed. Escalation
of armed conflicts has been going on, clan-authoritarian
developments and corruption has continued to grow
in this region.
Mass-scale violations of human rights
by the interior and law-enforcement agencies do not
cease, Russian laws are not observed and high level
of unemployment and economic retardness has been still
preserved. Kidnapping and murders, first of all of
human rights activists, in the Northern Caucasus have
already become a norm. Farid Babayev, Natalya Estemirova,
the spouses Sadulayev, Magomed Yevloyev and other
renown human rights activists and descendants were
murdered in the recent years.
We are greatly concerned that the killers and those
who ordered these loud political murders have not
been found yet, or, like in the case with Magomed
Yevloyev, they manage to avoid just punishment.
Despite a moratorium on capital punishment,
extrajudicial executions have been implemented in
Russia, Ingushetia, Chechnya, Dagestan, Kabardino-Balkaria
head of the Moscow branch of YABLOKO Eugeni Bunimovich
becomes Ombudsman for Children in Moscow
Press release, December 21,
Deputy head of the Moscow branch of
YABLOKO Eugeni Bunimovich was appointed Ombudsman
for Children in Moscow. The corresponding order was
signed by Moscow Ombudsman Alexander Muzikansky.
“I find this post very important,
as I as well as any other person realise what should
be done here,” Bunimovich told to the Interfax
Bunimovich also noted that the post
of Moscow Ombudsman for Children’s Rights is
quite independent in the administration of the Moscow
Ombudsman. Speaking about his plans Bunimovich told
that “he is not the Plenary Meeting of the Communist
Party of the USSR to make definite plans”, he
“will first examine what problems and complaints
people have and only after that will make plans.”
However, Bunimovich noted that he
would pay special attention to children’s risk
groups – orphans, neglected children and other,
as well as legal education in the field of human rights
for children and grown-ups. “Grown-ups often
do not understand what is a violation of child’s
rights or, for example, humiliation”, he noted.
Congress proposes an alternative
Press release, December 21,
The second session of the 15th Congress
of the YABLOKO party took place on December 19-20,
YABLOKO’s Chairman Sergei Mitrokhin
opened the Congress with a report on organisational
tasks of the party. He called the Congress to concentrate
on the tasks of the coming elections to the State
Duma focusing attention on the control over elections
at all the stages. Also by-elections to the Bureau
took place on the first Congress day.
Reports of the political leaders of
the party were on the Congress agenda on the second
“The regional elections we had
in October 2009 demonstrated that degradation of the
Russian political system shifted to a new stage,”
Mitrokhin said. According to Mitrokhin, the country
has been returning to the initial point of late 1980s
– early 1990s, the point of passive social dissatisfaction
under the conditions of authoritative power.
“The democratic project is over,
the society turned it down,” such was Mitrokhin’s
conclusion. He called the delegates of the Congress
to review the basic approaches which discredited democracy
in the eyes of the majority and launch a broad-scale
discussion in the society which should lead to formation
of a new democratic project for Russia.
Grigory Yavlinsky, member of YABLOKO’s
Political Committee, made a detailed report on the
political situation in the country and the tasks of
According to Yavlinsky, “Russia’s
political system has stopped being imitational as
nobody believes in imitation any more.” “If
the citizens of the country do not believe that they
are choosing the authority, this means that both the
President and the Government, and the Parliament put
themselves in a very unstable position,” he
of Stalinism should be prohibited
Press release, December 21,
“Propaganda of Stalinism should
be prohibited,” such a statement was made by
YABLOKO’s leader Sergei Mitrokhin in view of
celebration of Joseph Stalin’s birthday conducted
by the Communist Party of the Russian Federation and
a number of other political organisations.
“Today’s celebration [of
the 130th anniversary] of the executioner of the Russian
people and other nations of the former USSR represents
a fest on the blood of the murdered and those tortured
to death, a witless joy about the national catastrophe
of 1920-1930s,” Mitrokhin said.
Mitrokhin expressed his certainly
that “Stalin was responsible for the death of
the best people of the Russian nation.” “The
CPRF and other political organisations that are making
this blasphemous celebration are demonstrating the
hypocrisy of their statements in favour of protection
of the rights of the working people, as their idol
Stalin eliminated millions of working people,”
Mitrokhin also proposed to immediately
ban propaganda of Nazism and Stalinism.
Congress to open on December 20
Press release, December 18,
The official opening of the Congress,
political reports of the party leaders and a press
briefing will take place on Sunday, December 20 (starting
at 11:00 a.m.).
The Congress will take place in the
Research and Methodology Centre in the Moskovskiy
City, Leninsky District, Moscow Region.
to participate in a round table discussion devoted to
the problems of the Russian science
Press release, December 18,
On Monday, December 21, YABLOKO will
participate in a round table discussion “The Problems
of the Russian Science. Academic and Pedagogical Staff
for Russia’s Innovations”.
Representatives of the Russian academic
and expert communities, corresponding governmental
agencies and departments and the Right Cause party
will participate in the discussion. YABLOKO will be
represented by Eugeni Bunimovich, Deputy Chair of
the Moscow branch of the party and Chair of the Moscow
Duma Education and Science Commission in 2005-2009,
and Alexander Shishlov. Member of the YABLOKO Bureau,
Chair of the State Duma Education and Science Committee
Prosecutor to investigate the case of young YABLOKO’s
activist expelled from the university
Press release, December 17,
Chairman of the YABLOKO party Sergei
Mitrokhin demanded that Anton Zhebrun, young YABLOKO
activist expelled from the Omsk University, should
be allowed to resume his studies in the university.
Such a claim was sent by Sergei Mitrokhin to Public
Prosecutor of the Omsk Region and the head of the
Education Control Agency.
YABLOKO connects expelling of the
student with his public activities, as he is one of
the leaders of the Omsk Youth YABLOKO.
human rights activists get Andrei Sakharov Prize
A solemn ceremony of awarding the
Sakharov Prize took place at the session of the European
Parliament in Strasburg on December 16. The laureates
of the prize were Russian human rights activists Ludmila
Alexeyeva, Sergei Kovalyov and Oleg Orlov. Human rights
activists called the European legislators “not
to turn a deaf ear” to Russian lawlessness,
and President of the European Parliament Jerzy Buzek
expressed his hope that the murderers of Anna Politkovskaya
and Natalya Estemirova will be hold for court.
European legislators welcomed the
laureates with a storm of applause. Sergei Kovalyov
in his speech expressed his gratitude to the European
Parliament for a warm welcome, and asked the audience
to hold a minute of silence in memory of Natalya Estemirova,
human rights activist from the Memorial human rights
centre, killed in Chechnya in July 2009. “Europe
should not keep silence when human rights are violated
in Russia,” Kovalyov said. President of the
European Parliament Jerzy Buzek in his turn expressed
his hope that the prize will encourage human rights
activists to continue their fight against lawlessness
and protect the values that “we have been promoting
– freedom and democracy”.
the death of Yegor Gaidar
Condolences from Sergei Mitrokhin
and Grigory Yavlinsky,
December 16, 2009
The Russian United Democratic Party
YABLOKO conveys our deep condolences to the next-of-kin,
friends and colleagues of Yegor Timurovich Gaidar.
His death is a great loss for all
of us. We held different views on many issues in politics,
economy and domestic situation in the country. However,
Yegor Gaidar played a significant and non-simple role
in Russia’s history.
His death is
also a loss for the academic science and academic
community. As a scholar Yegor Gaidar has made a lot
for evaluation of the changes that have been taking
place in Russia’s economy for the past 20 years
and understanding what should be done in the future.
I am expressing my deep condolences
in connection with the death of Yegor Gaidar. He took
up the responsibility for the future of the country
when almost nobody knew what to do. The history of
new Russia will be always linked with the name of
begins election marathon in Khabarovsk
Press release, December 16,
The Khabarovsk branch of YABLOKO nominated
three candidates to run in the election campaign for
the regional Legislative Assembly. Yesterday the conference
of the regional YABLOKO branch elected three candidates
to run in single-mandate electoral districts in Khabarovsk
launches Liberal & Democrat strategic priorities
for new Commission
ALDE press release, December
Addressing journalists today in Strasbourg,
ALDE group leader, Guy Verhofstadt, presented the
strategic priorities of the Liberals and Democrats
for the incoming members of the European Commission
who face a series of hearings in January before being
"We need more ambition and a
more efficient Union," said Verhofstadt. "The
next five years will be critical and the current economic
and environmental situation requires a fundamental
rethink of how we structure our economy and our society."
The ALDE group believes the EU should
focus its efforts on five broad priorities:
1. tackling the economic and financial crisis,
2. tackling climate change,
3. fighting for freedom and fundamental rights,
4. rethinking the EU budget and system of own resources
5. promoting a coherent strategy in foreign affairs.
Each of the commissioners designate
will have important individual responsibilities for
the development of these policies. The hearings in
January will therefore be a crucial test of the Commission's
commitment to an ambitious and effective policy agenda.
The ALDE strategy document
therefore addresses specific policy priorities towards
each new commissioner as they prepare for the parliamentary
first hearing at the Kuntsevsky District Court, Moscow,
on election fraud
Press Release, December 15,
Today, on December 15, the Kuntsevsky
District Court, Moscow, conducted the first hearing
on the case on abrogation of the results of the elections
and recount of the votes at electoral district No
2488, where United Russia obtained 303 votes by means
of fraud. The only witness – deputy head of
the electoral commission – told that he found
valid ballots in the pack of invalidated ballots.
This is already the third court out
of ten Moscow courts, where YABLOKO tries to cancel
the results of the elections of October 11 due to
considerable discrepancies between the observers’
protocols and the official data.
newspaper turns 90 years!
December 15, 2009
I am glad to send my congratulations
to the MK paper on this honorable anniversary!
You write about the issues that are
interesting to all of us and in such a way you consider
proper to write about this. Your style is always up-to-date
and is always easy to recognize.
Despite your age you are always young,
because you are talented!
I am wishing to you to preserve all
the best you have accumulated for all these years
and further broaden your audience.
Chairman of the YABLOKO party
to suit United Russia in Kuntsevsky District Court
Press Release, December 14,
Tomorrow on December 15 at 11.00 a.m.
Kuntsevsky District Court, Moscow, will hear the case
on abrogation of the results of the elections and
recount of the votes at electoral district No 2488,
where United Russia obtained 303 votes by means of
The YABLOKO party bases its suit on
the discrepancies between the observers’ protocols
and the official data...
The address of the Kuntsevsky District
Court: Molodyozhnaya metro station, Yartsevskaya ul.,
12. Judge E.Yu.Mareyeva, hall No 419.
Youth YABLOKO organisation in St.Petersburg conducted
an action on the Constitution Day
zaks.ru, December 14, 2009
According to the zaks.ru correspondent,
the Youth YABLOKO organisation in St.Petersburg conducted
an action devoted to the Constitution Day. Today the
activists decided to conduct a theatrical action.
One of the YABLOKO’s activists wearing
a mask of RF President Dmitry Medvedev publicly introduced
amendments into the articles of the Constitution written
participated in a rally under the slogan “United
Russia Must Leave!”
Press Release, December 13,
A coalition of parties and movements
in the Kaliningrad region expressed their dissatisfaction
with the work of the Governor of the Kaliningrad Region.
The Constitution Day of December 12
was marked by a rally which gathered 5,000 people.
The participants of the rally expressed their negative
attitude to the policies of the ruling party and the
leaders of the region and of the Russian Federation.
The trigger for public dissatisfaction
was raising of the transport tax adopted by the regional
parliament. It was an unprecented mass-scale action
in the centre of Kaliningrad. All the parties and
movements in of the region – the CPRF, Just
Russia, the LDPR, YABLOKO, Solidarity, Patriots of
Russia, Spravedlivost (Justice) and other –
joined in the rally against the progovernmental United
Yavlinsky met with the students of the Evening Party
Press Release, December 11,
On December 9, 2009, the Evening University
of the YABLOKO party organised a meeting for its students
with Dr. Grigory Yavlinsky, the founder of the party
and member of the Political Committee.
Answering the questions of YABLOKO’s
members and advocates on the present economic, political
and social situation in Russia, elections, Russia’s
relations with other countries, etc. Grigory Yavlinsky
noted that a qualitatively new situation developed
in Russia after the elections of October 11. “No one
believes words about democracy in the country any
more after such elections.” Yavlinsky also noted that
the policies of the Russian authorities were unsuccessful.
“The authorities should realise that they do not have
the strength to modernise Russia, this means that
the opposition and other citizens get a chance,” Yavlinsky
International News, Issue 164
December 11, 2009
In Memoriam: Otto Graf Lambsdorff
Saturday December 5th, Honorary President of Liberal
International Otto Graf Lambsdorff suddenly and unexpectedly
passed away at the age of 82. Dr. Otto Graf Lambsdorff
was President of Liberal International from 1991-1994.
He was Liberal International's Honorary President
since June 1996. In 1951 he became member of the FDP
and in 1972 a Member the German Bundestag. He was
Minister of Economics in several cabinets under Chancellor
Helmut Schmidt and Chancellor Helmut Kohl from 1977
to June 1984, when he resigned as Federal Minister
of Economics. From 1984 until 1988 he was the Parliamentary
Spokesman on Economic Affairs, and afterwards was
the leader of the FDP until 1993. LI President Hans
van Baalen described Lambsdorff as one of the most
inspiring liberal politicians of the past century
and as a courageous statesman who was one of the architects
of post War Germany. 'He was one of the most open,
direct and when necessary bold political fighters
for a free market economy and civil liberties'. The
entire In Memoriam can be found at the following link.
Liberal International also started an online book
of condoleance, which can be found here.
the death of Otto Graf Lambsdorff
Condolences from the YABLOKO
December 11, 2009
On behalf of the Rssian Democratic
Party YABLOKO we would like to express our heartfelt
condolences to the friends and colleagues, the spouse
and next-of-kin of Count Otto Graf Lambsdorff.
An advocate of the German social market
economy Otto Graf Lambsdorff was an outstanding political
figure who influenced and largely formed the German
history in the second half of the 20th century and
the beginning of the 21st century.
rights activists Natalya Estemirova and Maksharip
Aushev awarded medals post mortem
On December 8, 2009, the award ceremony
of the Russian Ombudsman Medal “Hurry Up to Make Good
Deeds” took place in Moscow. Human rights activists
Natalya Estemirova and Maksharip Aushev awarded medals
Both were members of the Expert Council
with the Ombudsman of the Russian Federation. Natalya
Estemirova had been investigating abdications of civilians,
executions and tortures since the First Chechen War.
She worked in the Memorial human rights centre. Maksharip
Aushev actively engaged in the protection of human
rights after his son and nephew abdicated in Grozny
in 2007 had been released.
International Newsletter - Special Edition - Human
Rights Day 2009
LI News, Issue 159, November
Liberal Leaders Commemorate Human Rights Day
Human Rights News from around the world...
LI President: Belarus is the black hole of Europe
Anti-homosexuality bill in Uganda sparks concerns
Land grabbing continues to be a serious problem in
International community concerns the detention of
Chinese democracy activists
YABLOKO continues to fight election results
World Liberal Leaders Commemorate
Human Rights Day
On the occasion of Human Rights Day 2009, liberal
leaders worldwide share their comments on this auspicious
and important day. They include, LI President Hans
van Baalen, Prime Minister Matti Vanhanen (Finland),
Deputy Prime Minister of Sweden Maud Oloffsson, Deputy
Prime Minister of Beligum Didier Reynders, ALDE leader
Guy Verhofstadt, Mark Rutte (VVD-Netherlands), Ahmed
Dogan (MRF-Bulgaria), Tsai Ing-Wen (DPP-Taiwan), Sam
Rainsy (Cambodia), Chee Soon Juan (SDP-Singapore),
Martin Lee (Hong Kong), U Bo Thaung (NLDLA-Burma),
Kamal Nissanka (LP-Sri Lanka), Nick Clegg (LibDems
- UK), Alexander Pechtold (D66-Netherlands), Lamija
Tanovic (LDP-Bosnia-Herzegovina), Koh Tsu Koon (Gerakan-Malaysia),
Sergei Mitrokhin (Yabloko-Russia)
- Sergei Mitrokhin,
leader of the YABLOKO party, Russia
The situation with human rights have
rapidly aggravated in Russia throughout 2009. This
year have seen more murders of human rights activists
and lawyers: Natalya Estemirova was murdered in the
Caucasus and in Stanislav Markelov and Anastasiya
Baburova in Moscow. Violence and threats from unknown
persons against activists of non-profit organizations
and trade unions turned into a routine method of silencing
people. Governments do not give their permission to
conduct public protest actions; while unsanctioned
protest actions are scattered. Universities in some
of Russia’s regions make lists of “politically unreliable
students” where they include all politically active
students. This affected YABLOKO: our young activists
from Penza were accused of extremism and searches
were conducted in their homes, while another activist
- a student – was expelled from the Omsk University.
Two people from YABLOKO’s governing bodies (Vasily
Popov from Karelia and Ivan Bolshakov from Moscow)
were sentenced and put on probation on fabricated
cases, and one person (Anatoly Nechayev, Ulyanovsk)
has been still imprisoned also on a fabricated case.
continues to fight election results
Liberal International Newsletter,
December 10, 2009
In Russia, LI Full Member Yabloko
continues its battle against alleged widespread fraud
during last month's local elections. The Russian liberal
party has filed a suit for cancellation of the results
of the voting at two electoral districts in the Moscow
area. According to official data ruling party United
Russia obtained 1,002 votes more in those districts,
than indicated in the protocols given to the observers.
At a recent bureau meeting of Yabloko, party leader
Sergei Mitrokhin, commented on the flawed outcome
of the recent elections and the consequences for democracy
in Russia: “It has become clear after voting
on October 11 that elections as a legitimate institution
which could be trusted by society has been completely
ruined in Russia. This means that the democratic project
of the country's development initiated in the late
1980s has been completely closed now — and not
only by the ruling elite, but by society as well.”
rules out that a thousand of additional votes stuffed
in for progovernmental United Russia is not a satisfactory
motive for recount of the votes
Press Release, December 9,
On December 8, 2009, the Perovo District
Court of Moscow declined YABLOKO’s suit on annulment
of the results of the voting at two polling stations
in the Veshnyaki area where 1.002 votes had been simply
added to the progovernmental United Russia party.
At the previous hearings the key witness of YABLOKO
– a member of the electoral commission with a casting
vote – made a statement that her signature in the
official protocol had been faked. Signatures of several
other members of the district electoral commission
had been either missing or faked...
YABLOKO asked the court to satisfy
its claim as the Moscow and the local commissions
failed to determine the will of the electorate. However,
the judge turned down YABLOKO’s claim. YABLOKO is
going to appeal this decision in a superior court.
This has become already the second
decision when Moscow local courts were turning down
YABLOKO’s suits. On December 3, 2009, the Golovinsky
District Court refused to satisfy YABLOKO’s claims
in connection with two districts in the Levoberezhny
area where United Russia was simply added votes taken
from other parties. The next trial will take place
in the Kuntsevsky District Court.
YABLOKO has filed claims on 14 polling
stations in 10 Moscow districts (see
the schedule of trials).
|December 9, 2009
to conduct a manifestation on the Constitution Day
Press Release, December 9,
Manifestation under the slogan “Let
Us Together Protect Our Rights” will take place in
Ekaterinburg on the Constitution Day, December 12.
The action will be organised by the YABLOKO party
with support of public and human rights organisations.
Public figures, deputies of the legislative
assemblies, human rights activists, writers, artists
and musicians will participate in the manifestation.
They will hold placards with quotation out of the
“We participate all preserving their
civil dignity and would like their civil rights to
be respected to join us on December 12! Everyone can
join us with his or her slogan. This will be a manifestation
of those who really love their city and their Motherland,”
said Maxim Petlin, the leader of the Sverdlovsk YABLOKO
support of YABLOKO’s activist Anton Zhebrun
Press Release, December 9,
On December 9, 2009, the Kirov regional
branch of YABLOKO, released a statement (signed by
Tatyana Naumovich, Chair of YABLOKO’s Kirov branch)
in support of YABLOKO’s activist Anton Zhebrun.
The Kirov party branch expresses its
indignation on the fact of expelling Anton Zhebrun,
activist of the Youth YABLOKO, from the Omsk State
University under a faked pretext and considers such
actions of Vladimir Strunin, the University rector,
against YABLOKO’s member a political persecution.
This is a sad fact. It took place in the university;
whereas the very word “university” is associated with
academic freedom and the freedom of speech – freedom
to ask, freedom to find truth on any phenomena and
views, regardless of the fact whether such points
of view hurt any officials or not. The notion of academic
freedom is incompatible with the making political
views a pretext for expelling from the university.
the death of Pyotr Vail
Condolences by Grigory Yavlinsky
December 9, 2009
Please receive our deep and sincere
condolences regarding the passing of Pyotr Vail. Our
hearts go out to Ella, all next-of-kin, friends and
colleagues, and all the readers and listeners of Pyotr
The loss of Russian social and political journalism,
aesthetics and prose, as well as journalism in general
is incalculable. This is something that we can never
retrieve and recover.
Pyotr was such a bright light, so open and inquisitive
about all that life has to offer – in short he was
a wonderful person.
He has left this world, but has granted us an opportunity
to stay close to him through his books.
|December 8, 2009
leader participated in the international conference
in Cairo devoted to global democracy
Press Release, December 8,
On December 7, 2009, YABLOKO’s
leader Sergei Mitrokhin opened international conference
Conceptualising Global Democracy conducted within
the framework of Building Global Democracy Programme.
Scholars, politicians and officials
from over 60 countries of all the regions of the world
participating in the conference will discuss the prospects
of democracy in a changing more global world. The
honour to open a discussion was granted to YABLOKO’s
leader Sergei Mitrokhin who was a discussant of the
report Re-conceptualize Global Democracy from the
Perspective of Chinese Culture made by Chinese scholars.
Sergei Mitrokhin marked a similarity
of Russia’s and China’s problems. “In
my opinion the authors are overestimating the national
specifics and underestimate common democratic values.
We can observe the same thing in Russia at present.
The idea of a “sovereign democracy” has
been actively promoted by the Russian authorities.
It implies abolishing of democratic norms and values
(that we have being observing) under the pretext of
“Russia’s national specifics” or
a “specific Russian way towards democracy”.
“In our country this approach
serves so that to justify multiple violations of basic
democratic rules and procedures, election fraud, total
dependency of the judicial authority on the executive
authority, negligence of the parliament and reduction
of its powers and uncontrolled powerful bureaucracy,”
unfriendly bulbs versus nuclear power stations?
blog at the Echo Moskvi web-site
December 7, 2009
I was wondering why our government
suddenly made a complete ban on incandescent electric
bulbs its prime concern (Law of the RF No 261-FZ “On
Energy Saving and Raising of Energy Efficiency and
on Introduction of Changes into Some Legislative Acts
of the Russian Federation” of November 23, 2009).
And recently I have heard the news
that Europe has been closing production of incandescent
electric lamps of the first generation (luminescent,
with mercury) – the very lamps that have to
replace our incandescent electric bulbs. And these
environmentally unfriendly productions are offered
cheaply to those who would be eager to buy them. Let
us make a simple calculation...
|December 7, 2009
Political Committee: Russian state acts like an irresponsible
business corporation conducting anti-environmental
Press Release, December 5,
On December 5, 2009, YABLOKO’s
Political Committee discussed the ecological policy
of the government. The key report was made by Academician
Alexei Yablokov, leader of the Green Russia faction.
After a discussion the Committee adopted resolution
“On the Anti-Environmental Policies of the Russian
On opening of the meeting the Political
Committee commemorated the victims of the Nevsky Express
railroad crash and the victims of the Perm nightclub
fire by a one-minute silence.
Alexei Yablokov reported on a bad
environmental situation in Russia dwelling on the
most acute ecological problems and offered ways of
their solution. According to the World Health Organisation,
493,000 people die annually in Russia because of ecological
problems. Thus, life expectancy for men is only 59
years, which is 15 – 18 years less than in the
USA and Japan. And it is even 3 – 4 years lower
in the zones of environmental pollution (about 14%
of the territory of the country).
|December 5, 2009
Political Committee expresses condolences to the Perm
night club fire victims
Press Release, December 5,
YABLOKO’s Political Committee
expresses condolences to the relatives and next-of-kin
of the Perm night club fire victims.
Members of YABLOKO’s Political
Committee commemorated the victims by a one-minute
silence at the opening of the meeting.
YABLOKO wishes rapid recovery to all
|December 2, 2009
of local electoral commissions speak in favour of
cancellation of the results of the elections in the
Veshnyaki area, Moscow
Press Release, December 2,
Yesterday on December 1, the Perovo
district court conducted the second hearing on YABLOKO’s
suit for cancellation of the results of the voting
at two electoral districts in the Veshnyaki area,
Moscow. According to official data United Russia obtained
there by 1,002 votes more than indicated in the protocols
given to the observers. The court heard the evidence
of the chairs of these electoral commissions and rejected
several motions by YABLOKO’s lawyers.
At the first hearings of the case
Chair of the Territorial Electoral Commission Vera
Stepanova presented to the court her version of the
developments. She stated that the protocols given
to the observers can not serve written evidence, as
the said observers “created psychologically
unbearable atmosphere” at the polling station
on the election day - October 11, 2009, which “caused
a great number of errors on behalf of the chairs and
secretaries of the commission”.
of St.Petersburg YABLOKO branch Ekaterina Kolesova
gets Artyom Borovik prize
Press Release, December 1,
Member of St.Petersburg YABLOKO organisation
Ekaterina Kolesova was awarded Artyom Borovik prize.
This prize is awarded for achievements in the field
of independent journalism and journalistic investigations.
Kolesova obtained her prize for the
series of articles devoted to journalistic investigations
in St.Petersburg’s Novaya Gazeta. “Everyone
heard about the Major Yevsyukov case (Ed. the police
officer who shot people in a large department store
just because he allegedly “felt upset”,
the head of the Moscow Police tried to protect Yevsyukov
and was dismissed only after loud public discontent),
we had had such case as early as in 2001: a policeman
shot students”, Kolesova says.