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Week-ending 18 April 2014

Ukraine alleges 





4 killed 


Anti-sexual harassment 
On 14/4 Ukraine's security service released a recording of what it claims are phone conversations it intercepted between "subversive groups" of Russian servicemen deployed in eastern Ukraine and their bosses in Moscow. The video cited a Moscow phone number for one of the callers. (The Moscow Times, 15/4)

On 17/4 in Geneva Ukraine, Russia, the USA, and the EU announced agreement on measures aimed at defusing the crisis in Ukraine, including the disbandment of illegal armed groups across Ukraine, an end to the occupation of public buildings, an end to violence, an amnesty to protesters, excluding those found guilty of capital offenses, and the deployment of an OSCE mission to oversee de-escalation in Ukraine. (RFE/RL, 17/4)

Freedom of expression
On 13/4 at least 5,000 people turned out in Moscow for a rally to denounce a government crackdown on independent media and Russian state television's news coverage of Ukraine. (RFE/RL, 14/4; see also The Moscow Times, 13/4;, 14/3)

Electoral rights
On 15/4 the State Duma approved in a first reading a bill to end direct mayoral elections in some of Russia's largest cities in what critics said was an attempt to ensure the appointment of mayors loyal to the Kremlin. (The Moscow Times, 16/4)

North Caucasus
On 12/4 an appeal was lodged against the conviction for fraud of Mikhail Savva, a professor at Kuban University and director of grant programmes at the Southern Regional Resource Centre. (, 14/4)

On 15/4 Russian forces killed four suspected militants in Daghestan during a security operation. (RFE/RL, 15/4)

On 18/4 Magomed Mutsolgov, head of the Mashr human rights NGO, affirmed he has no intention of either abandoning his human rights activities or modifying his way of life in response to a recent blog post claiming the FSB has dispatched a hit squad to Ingushetia with orders to kill him. (RFE/RL 18/4)

Gender equality
On 14/4 reports said an anti-sexual harassment bill, submitted to the State Duma, has been criticized on grounds it could be used to deport foreign workers unfairly. The bill, which would apply only to women harassed by men, defines harassment as unwelcome contact or attempted contact, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature. The Federation of Migrants in Russia criticized the proposed sanctions as bordering on racist. (The Moscow Times, 14/4)
Rights in Russia,
21 Apr 2014, 07:42