MINELRES: News from the SOVA Center: July 2008

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Sat Jul 19 09:31:23 2008

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News from the SOVA Center


St. Petersburg Murder of Uzbek Worker Goes to Court -

Four young boys are being brought to court, after the investigation of
the November 2007 murder of an Uzbek worker in Repino was finished in
mid-July 2008. All suspects are charged with incitement of inter-ethnic
hatred and hostility (Article 282 of the Russian Criminal Code), and two
of them, both minors, face murder charges (Paragraph 2 of Article 105). 

Internet Forum Comments bring one Man to Court -

In mid-July 2008, in the town of Aleksandrov (Vladimir region), a
23-year old man was charged for posting nationalistic comments on a
forum, on the basis of Paragraph 1 of Article 282 of the Russian
Criminal Code (condemning the incitement of hatred or hostility).


Jehovah's Witnesses, considered 'extremist' by the Russian authorities

At 11 o’clock, on July 16, 2008, the FSB searched a Jehovah’s Witnesses’
house of faith in Yekaterinburg, in the Sverdlovsk region. 18 believers
who now face criminal charges were detained while preparing for the
service, and were denied the use of cell phones so that it was
impossible for them to contact their relatives or their lawyers. All
biblical literature was confiscated from the church. 

Education - The First Step towards Tolerance

If asked what a first measure would be to combat extremism among the
population, many an informed observer would answer ‘education’. In St.
Petersburg, parental meetings were held in April and May to discuss the
ways to fight youth extremism.

Medvedev: "Russia sees it as its responsibility to counter the
manifestations of neo-fascism"

On July 15, the President of the Russian Federation, Dmitriy Medvedev
was received at the building of the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs
in the Smolensk area of Moscow by the heads of diplomatic missions and
representations of Russia abroad and within international organizations.
It was during this encounter that the President outlined Russia’s
foreign policy priorities.  

'Forbidden Art' Forbidden

On May 13, 2008, Yuri Samodurov, director of the Sakharov museum in
Moscow, was charged on the basis of Paragraph 2, Article 282 of the
Russian Criminal Code (incitement to national and religious hatred), for
the 2006 exhibition ‘Forbidden Art’. 


Artist and Comic Book Designer Khikhus Attacked in Moscow by Fascists 
A http://www.xeno.sova-center.ru/6BA2468/6BB41EE/B62F5DBA  

On July 11, 2008, near the Taganskaya metro station in Moscow, artist
and comic book designer Õèõóñ (Khikhus) was attacked by a fascist. The
reason for the attack was most likely Khikhusaˆ™ appearance

The DPNI Strives for Legality 

On June 12, 2008, the congress of the Movement against Illegal
Immigration (DPNI) decided to move from radical nationalism to
"nationalism in the European sense".


Two Nazi-skinhead Groups face Criminal Charges in Moscow

On July 1, 2008, the district attorney's office passed two criminal
cases to the Moscow City Law Court, concerning the accusations against
"the Ryno gang" and "the Ivan Kalinichenko gang".


Russian Public Opinion 2007 – A Study by the Levada Research Center -

In June 2008, the Ëåâàäà (Levada) Research Center released the ninth
edition of its annual report on Russian public opinion, for the year
2007. The nineteenth section of the report is specifically concerned
with ethnic relations in Russia, and the Russians’ attitudes towards

“Hitler’s Table Talks” – Extremist Material or Historical Monograph? -

On July 8, 2008, the Ulyanovsk Law Court acknowledged as extremist
material the book of English historian Hugh Trevor-Roper, “Hitler’s
Table Talks. 1941-1944”.  


News releases

Russian Blogger Receives on Year of Suspended Sentence for a Comment -
Today, July 7, 2008, blogger and musician Savva Terentyev received one
year of suspended sentence from the Federal Court of Syktyvkar (Republic
of Komi) for his comments to a blog article by local journalist Boris
Suranov, posted on February 15, 2007. 

Reports and Analytics

Alexander Verkhovsky. Anti-Extremist Legislation, its Use and Misuse -
We publish the substantially rewritten and expanded version of the paper
as it is published in the book "Xenophobia, Freedom of Conscience and
Anti-Extremism in Russia in 2007" which is in print now.

Organizations Found by Russian Courts to be Extremist -
This is a list of organizations found by Russian courts to be extremist
over the period between 2002 and 2007. This is not an official list; it
is based on the findings of our Center’s monitoring.
This list was compiled at the end of March 2008. Updated version is
available in Russian only. 

Materials Found by Russian Courts to be Extremist -
This list was compiled at the end of March 2008. Updated version is
available in Russian only.
In addition to materials on the banned list officially published by the
Russian Federal Registration Service (as of 14 March 2008), our list
includes those where we already know of relevant judgments.


June 2008. Monthly summary -

In June 2008, no less than 7 attacks of racist and neo-nationalist
character were recorded, as the result of which no less than 13 people
suffered. Like in May, let us underline that most likely we are not
dealing with a real reduction in the activity of the skinheads but with
lack of information. In June, incidents were recorded in Moscow, St.
Petersburg, Volgograd, Lipetsk, Nizhniy Novgorod, and Yaroslavl. 


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