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October 2011

Magnitsky case 
A report (1/10) said Britain had blacklisted at least 60 Russian officials implicated in the 2009 prison death of lawyer Sergei Magnitsky. Police investigator Nelli Dmitriyeva, implicated in the Magnitsky prosecution, has been charged (6/10) with extorting a $3 million bribe. Anti-corruption blogger Aleksei Navalny lost (17/10) a defamation case to Vladlen Stepanov whom Navalny had alleged was a beneficiary of tax fraud Magnitsky sought to expose. Private e-mails by Navalny were later leaked online (25/10). The Foreign Ministry announced (22/10) an entry ban on unspecified U.S. officials, ‘mirroring’ a US ban on Russian officials linked to Magnitsky’s death.

Yukos affair
Former Yukos vice president Vasily Aleksanyan, denied treatment for AIDS-related illnesses in pre-trial detention until freed on bail in 2009, died (3/10) aged 39. Maksim Dudarev, a jailed former employee of Russia's state property agency, was reported (24/10) in solitary confinement after telling media (11/10) the authorities’ 2004 sale of a major Yukos stake had been fraudulent. Opposition activists rallied (25/10) in St. Petersburg on the 8th anniversary of Mikhail Khodorkovsky’s arrest. Aleksandr Kuchma was reported (28/10) to be seeking political asylum in Britain after saying officials had forced him to attack his former cellmate Khodorkovsky and accuse him of sexual harassment.

Prison conditions
Rights activists launched an investigation into the death (8/10) of Moscow high school principal Andrei Kudoyarov, in pre-trial detention for five months on suspicion of taking bribes. Footage of a Russian prison official beating female inmates was leaked online. Amnesty International said (21/10) ethnic Chechen prisoner Zubair Zubairaev, a victim of torture, urgently needs an independent medical examination and treatment.

Media rights
A group of media NGOs launched (4/10) a new database on violations of the rights of journalists in Russia on 4/10. Amnesty International called (5/10) on the Russian authorities to bring the perpetrators of attacks on journalists and rights defenders to justice. Human Rights First said (8/10) anti-extremist legislation is used to persecute journalists, independent media, rights groups and religious organizations. Leonid Nikolayev, of the art group Voina, said (11/10) he is seeking compensation for unjustified prosecution after charges against him were dropped (1/9). Professor Mikhail Suprun and former police archivist Colonel Aleksandr Dudarev went on trial in Arkhangelsk (17/10) on charges of violating privacy laws in the course of research into ethnic Germans exiled to the region by Stalin. NTV withdrew (30/10) a documentary about human rights violations in Chechnya.

Right of assembly
Forty people were detained (1/10) by police in Moscow during a gay pride rally. Moscow police detained 24 and dispersed an opposition rally (5/10) against PM Putin. Four were arrested of about 200 participants in a Day of Wrath rally (12/10) in Moscow. Sergei Udaltsov, Left Front coordinator on hunger strike after being sentenced to 10 days' in prison (13/10) for resisting police, was released (20/10) after his health deteriorated. Police detained more than 20 (25/10) participating in an unsanctioned Moscow rally protesting the authorities' refusal to register opposition parties. Police detained Marat Zhalaliyev, a Tatar activist, for unstated reasons (15/10) at a Kazan commemoration of the 1552 conquest of Kazan by Ivan the Terrible. Several Moscow State University students of journalism were detained by the Federal Guard Service (20/10) when President Medvedev arrived at the campus. Strategy-31 held unsanctioned protest rallies in Moscow and St. Petersburg (31/10). In Moscow, police detained at least 10 of the 50 demonstrators.

North Caucasus
Human Rights Watch said (11/10) celebrities who attended the Chechen leader’s birthday in Grozny (5/10) should not keep money or gifts they received.
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Rights in Russia,
7 Nov 2011, 04:07
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