Russian prosecutor moves to abolish renowned human rights group
A Russian prosecutor has asked the country’s Supreme Court to abolish a renowned human rights group in Russia.
Prosecutor Dmitry Vagurin called on Thursday for the International Memorial Society to be banned, saying it is concealing its status as a foreign agent and that the group “violated the rights and freedoms of citizens, namely the right to freedom of information,” The Washington Post reported.
The International Memorial Society is a popular human rights group that focuses on remembering and researching abuses during the Soviet Union.
Two departments of the organization were given the label of “foreign agents” in recent years. Under the label, the group is required to disclose it is a foreign agent on many of its posts and activities.
Vagurin argues the group has failed to provide the appropriate labels and says that failure warrants complete termination of the group, according to The Post.
The moves against the International Memorial Society have been condemned internationally, with U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken saying earlier this month that “Russia must end the lawsuits and stop misusing its law on ‘foreign agents’ to harass, stigmatize, and silence civil society.”
Russia has used its foreign agent laws to also go after independent media outlets, as well as organizations and people tied to opposition leader Alexei Navalny.
The court will return on Dec. 14 for further deliberations on Vagurin’s request.