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27/01/2022

Elena Shakhova: “There have been attempts to humanise the foreign agents law, but they have led to nothing good”

Elena Shakhova is the Chair of Citizens' Watch, a human rights NGO in St. Petersburg, and a Board Member of the EU-Russia Civil Society Forum. In a special interview for Legal Dialogue, Elena speaks to journalist Vladimir Shvedov about the situation with human rights in places of detention in Russia and how the pandemic has changed things and discusses a highly sensitive issue for Russian civil society today, the law on "foreign agents."
20/12/2021

Galina Arapova: “People have little to no understanding of what independent journalism is and how it should function in a normal society”

In a special interview for Legal Dialogue, journalist Vladimir Shvedov asks lawyer and head of the Mass Media Defence Centre Galina Arapova about her vision of the present and future of Russian journalism, IT giants' policies concerning freedom of speech, and whether the “foreign agents" law can be improved.
17/11/2021

“People here don’t understand that you can’t take a woman by force.” Why sex without consent is rape in Europe, but not in Russia

From an ethical, legal and social standpoint, sexual consent is a complex concept. It has no single definition, and taboos around talking about sex can make it difficult to discuss. Nevertheless, every year more and more countries are recognising sex without consent as rape.
29/09/2021

Ministers and Dissertations: Academic Fraud Scandals and Their Political Consequences in Russia and the EU

A 2013 ‘word of the year’ in Russia was Dissernet, the name of an emerging informal network that set out to investigate infractions of academic integrity in Russia – in particular, to expose plagiarism in the dissertations of high-ranking academics and politicians.
28/06/2021

Tatiana Glushkova: ‘The choice is yours: either to live under constant threat or to post nothing but cute kittens in social media’

In an exclusive interview for Legal Dialogue, lawyer Tatyana Glushkova and journalist Vladimir Shvedov discuss the multiple forms of 'foreign agent' labels in Russia today and their implications for those affected.
03/05/2021

Searching for balance: freedom of expression and the use of criminal measures to combat COVID-19 misinformation

During the COVID-19 pandemic, misinformation has become an important problem that threatens the health and even lives of people. But where is the line to be drawn between the fight against the spread of disinformation and the attack on free speech?
31/03/2021

All in the Same Boat?

At the outset of the COVID-19 pandemic in the spring of 2020, it seemed that we were all equally vulnerable to the coronavirus, which did not discriminate by gender, ethnicity, social status or income. Politicians said that we were all in the same boat. It soon became apparent, however, that this was not entirely true.
22/02/2021

One Year After Mietendeckel: How Berlin Rent Cap Works

A year ago, Berlin passed the Mietendeckel, "a rent cap law". How does it work today and what do city residents and landlords think about it?
11/01/2021

Brexit: implications for human rights in the UK

How are Brexit and human rights related? Simon Cosgrove, the Chair of the Trustees of "Rights in Russia", in his column reflects on how Britain's exit from the EU has impacted the present and future of human rights.
22/12/2020

Repaying Historical Dues: Here Is Your European Passport

Today, a number of European states allow the descendants of people who fled their home countries in the 30-40s of the 20th century, or even in the 15th century, to restore their lost European citizenship. How do these legal initiatives work in practice? Can they remedy the injustices of the past?
23/11/2020
Фото: Семейный архив Евгении Шашевой

Echoes of Stalin’s “Great Terror.” How the descendants of repression continue to fight for their rights

Massive political repression in the USSR peaked in the late 1930s, but the descendants of the repressed are still fighting to restore the honest name of their ancestors and are trying to return home from their places of exile, to where their families were expelled decades ago.
09/11/2020

National Sovereignty or International Law? The Russian Constitution Has the Last Word

On January 2020, President Putin called for amending the Russian Constitution to establish its precedence over supranational judicial bodies, meaning, primarily, the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR). Interestingly, this was not a new idea: Russian legal experts who for many years have been suggesting such an amendment to the Constitution had referred to German precedent.
19/11/2016

Conscripts Allowed to Photograph Their Files

On 31 August 2016, St. Petersburg City Court upheld a district court’s judgement in the case of Artyom Efimov against the Military Commissariat, a […]
24/11/2016

Diversity of Legal Clinics Can Improve Access to Legal Aid

No longer just a trend, legal clinics are now perceived as an essential part of the educational process in law schools; in addition, legal […]
26/11/2016

Domestic Violence Law: ‘Connected Persons’ Concept Added to Russia’s Criminal Code

For the first time, the Russian law has recognised a separate category of ‘connected persons’ and the fact that someone exposed to violence at […]
27/11/2016

Russia’s Controversial ‘Yarovaya Package’ Targets Missionaries, Threatens Privacy

The so-called ‘Yarovaya package’, containing a series of legislative amendments ostensibly designed to combat terrorism, is perhaps the most dramatic development in  Russian legislation […]
29/11/2016

Prominent Human Rights Activists Ousted from Russia’s Prison Watchdog

New rosters of Public Monitoring Commissions (PMC), Russia’s only independent prison watchdog, were released on 21 October1Public Monitoring Commissions roster, published on the website […]
29/11/2016

Elena Zhemkova: ‘Ministry of Justice Decision Contradicts Constitutional Court’s Ruling’

An international organisation – the International Memorial – was included in the Russian list of  “organisations performing the functions of foreign agents” for the […]
29/11/2016

Harry Hummel: ‘The EU is Built upon the Assumption that all its Members are Grown-up Democracies’

In an interview for the Legal Dialogue, Harry Hummel, Associate Policy Director of the Netherlands Helsinki Committee and member of the Steering Committee of […]
18/01/2017

Russian President Signs Controversial Law on Use of Physical Force in Prisons

The bill outlining use of physical force, special technical devices and firearms on convicts was signed by President Putin on 29 December 2016. It […]
19/01/2017

Domestic Violence Law: Russia Moves to Decriminalize Battery Within Families

In a sudden U-turn, Russian lawmakers are eager to pass the bill abolishing last year’s amendments to the Criminal Code that made simple battery […]