Apr 27, 2021
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The Moscow City Court restricts the activities of FBK * and FZPG * on the claim of the prosecutor’s office for recognizing them as extremist

The Moscow City Court on Tuesday, April 27, at the request of the prosecutor
Photobank Moscow-Live / Mikhail Tikhonov

The Moscow City Court on Tuesday, April 27, at the request of the prosecutor’s office, restricted the work of the Anti-Corruption Fund * (FBK *) and the Citizens Rights Protection Fund * (FZPG *) within the framework of a claim to recognize the organization as extremist.

“A judge of the Moscow City Court considered the plaintiff’s petition to take preliminary protection measures. On April 27, a judge of the Moscow City Court issued a ruling on the application of preliminary protection measures in the form of a ban on certain actions against non-profit organizations FBK *, FZPG *,” the press service of the court reported.

The day before, a similar measure was taken by the prosecutor’s office in relation to the activities of Navalny’s headquarters, which are public organizations. But with regard to NGOs, only the court has the right to suspend activities, which today issued the corresponding decision. As part of the preliminary interim measures, until the end of the consideration of the case on recognition as extremist, these organizations are prohibited from “posting materials” on the Internet, interacting with the media, organizing rallies and other public events, using any banking services, as well as participating in elections and referendums.

The director of the fund, Ivan Zhdanov, told MBH Media that FBK * would not do anything about this decision. “This is not a suspension of activities, this is a ban on certain actions. We carefully reviewed them (the prohibitions) from the petition. They are even formulated illiterately. Somehow we do not plan to take these prohibitions into account in our activities,” he said.

Navalny’s headquarters acted differently, their activities were also suspended. Since yesterday, Navalny’s headquarters throughout Russia have stopped working in their previous format and have frozen their pages on social networks. “We can no longer work in the old format. It is unsafe for our employees and our supporters,” said the Telegram channel of Navalny’s headquarters in Moscow.

No more information will appear on the pages in VKontakte, Twitter, Instagram and other social networks. “In the near future we will change the name and depersonalize as much as possible,” warned Navalny’s headquarters. But Navalny’s team assured that his supporters “in their personal capacity” will continue to fight corruption, United Russia and Vladimir Putin.

On April 16, the Moscow prosecutor’s office filed a lawsuit to declare the Anti-Corruption Foundation *, Navalny’s headquarters, and the Foundation for the Protection of Citizens’ Rights * extremist. According to the prosecutor’s office, “these organizations are engaged in creating conditions for the destabilization of the social and socio-political situation,” in connection with which they should be recognized as extremist. The prosecutor’s office claims that under the guise of these NGOs, foreign and international organizations operate in Russia, whose activities are recognized in the Russian Federation as undesirable. “Under the guise of liberal slogans, these organizations are engaged in creating conditions for the destabilization of the social and socio-political situation. on the website of the department.

The status of extremist organizations will make the work of these NGOs in Russia impossible, all symbols will be banned, and the media, when mentioning such organizations, will have to emphasize that they are prohibited. In this case, criminal liability will threaten not only the organizers of NGOs, but also ordinary participants and donors. Organizations-“extremists” under the law “On Counteraction to Extremist Activity” are prohibited from holding meetings, rallies and participating in elections. Getting on the list of the Ministry of Justice actually stops any banking operations. That is, any activity related to Navalny will be excluded from the legal political field.

The label “extremist” carries several important consequences for the organization and its members. The organizers of the “extremist association” could face up to 10 years in prison under Article 282.2 of the Criminal Code (“Organization of the activities of an extremist organization”). Under the same article, those who participate in the work of such organizations face criminal liability – from two to six years in prison. This risk also exists for ordinary FBK employees *, for volunteers and for sympathizers.

According to the prosecutor’s office, they have “exhaustive evidence that these structures conduct extremist activities, destabilize the socio-political situation in the country, including through calls for violent actions, extremist activities, mass riots, through attempts to involve minors in illegal activities. “.

However, it will not be possible to find out for certain what evidence of such activity on the part of FBK * is, since the Moscow City Court classified all documents in this case.

* – a non-profit organization entered by the Ministry of Justice of the Russian Federation in the register of NPOs performing the functions of a foreign agent

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