On Friday, 7 July 2023, the Russian Prosecutor General’s office added the Human Rights House Foundation to the list of so-called “undesirable organisations” targeting foreign and international organisations. This is a reprisal for our human rights work and we do not regard the status as legitimate.
The Russian government took this action under a 2015 law which, as we noted in our “Crisis Point in Russia” report, seeks to isolate Russian human rights defenders and organisations from the international community and hinder information flow from Russia. This latest move by the authorities underscores the increasingly perilous situation for Russian independent civil society and human rights defenders. It is a reminder that in today’s Russia it is no longer possible to peacefully assemble, or express opinions and thoughts contrary to those approved by the Kremlin without serious reprisals. Independent media has been shut down or forced out of the country. Independent journalists like Elena Milashina are attacked, beaten or arbitrarily detained simply for trying to report the truth. Human rights organisations, like Moscow Helsinki Group and Memorial, and independent civil society organisations continue to be liquidated or labelled foreign agents by the authorities.
HRHF believes that lasting human rights change can be achieved when a strong and independent civil society is united in solidarity and able to freely contribute, alongside other stakeholders, to the promotion and protection of human rights at home and abroad. Our organisation remains committed to advancing and protecting fundamental rights that underpin independent civil society and make it possible to hold institutions and individuals accountable.