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Forum 2000: The Rule of Law in Russia

October 10, 2011

Monday, October 10, 2011, 18.0019.30, Zofin Palace, Conference Hall

Keynote Speech:
Grigory Yavlinsky, Economist and Politician, Russia

Gregory Feifer, Senior Correspondent, RFE/RL, Czech Republic/USA

Panel Discussion:
William Browder, Founder and CEO, Hermitage Capital Management, United Kingdom
Vadim Klyugant, Lawyer, Russia
Bobo Lo, Independent Scholar and Consultant on Russia and China, United Kingdom/Australia


Click here to watch video recording of the speeches

The panel examined the absence of rule of law in Russia. The keynote speaker Grigory Yavlinsky distinguished this absence by the lack of independent justice, the influence of the political elite and of money. He identified three root causes of the problem: the 1917 state coup in which a criminal group of people were taking power in Russia, the privatization process of the 1990s, and the support of the international community for the political and economic reforms of the 1990s. Mr. Yavlinsky also stated that Russias corruption is a joint venture with the West.

William Browder then spoke on the possibility of international action putting pressure on the Russian political elite to interrupt this joint venture. While Grigory Yavlinsky later reiterated the importance of initiating change from within Russia, stating that Russian politicians all know, personally, that it is [their] task to change the system. Vadim Klyuvgant followed with an analysis of the Russian dictate of law. He insisted on individual human rights as a foundation for rule of law.

Bobo Lo continued the discussion with a distinction between the notions of rule of law and rule by law which prevails in Russia. He defined this concept as the use and abuse, particularly, of laws and administrative regulations to support power rather than justice. The panel recognized the validity of Yavlinskys view that there is no rule of law in Russia and we must implement it.


See also:

The original publication

Privatisation in Russia

Understanding Russia

Elections to the State Duma 2011

October 10, 2011

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