December 2021

Human Rights Group International Memorial shut down by Russian government

By: Jackson Sharman The Russian Supreme Court delivered a ruling on December 28 that ordered the closure of International Memorial, one of the country’s most prominent human rights groups. Founded in the late 1980s while the Soviet Union still existed, Memorial established 23 branches of the society. The group’s primary work was to study and…

Minsk adds RFE/RL’s Belarus Service to list of extremist organizations

By: Lane Johansen Last year, the Belarusian Foreign Ministry revoked the accreditation of all RFE/RL journalists. In November, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty reported that Andrey Kuznechyk – a Belarusian journalist who had worked as a freelancer for RFE/RL – was arbitrarily detained in Minsk. A month later, on December 23, Belarus’ Interior Ministry added RFE/RL’s…

A briefing on Russia’s hybrid war in Ukraine

By: Lane Johansen Over the past month or so, headlines have been dominated by news about the buildup of almost 100,000 Russian troops at the Ukrainian border for the second time this year and warnings of an imminent Russian invasion. It’s important to keep in mind, however, that Russian troops have occupied eastern Ukraine since…

Ukrainian political prisoners tortured in occupied Donbas

By: Lane Johansen Since Russia began its hybrid war in eastern Ukraine in 2014, countless civilians have suffered, including the over 280 Ukrainians in prisons in the occupied Donetsk and Luhansk regions of Donbas. There have been numerous reports of torture and inhumane conditions in these prisons, especially in the infamous Izolyatsia prison in Donetsk.…

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