Memorial after Arseny Roginsky

posted 8 Feb 2018, 06:36 by Rights in Russia   [ updated 8 Feb 2018, 06:39 ]
1 February 2018


The death of Arseny Roginsky is a huge loss for Memorial. He was not only the chair of the board of the International Memorial Society, but its undisputed leader. It is simply not possible to find a replacement of equal standing, individuals of his calibre are rare indeed.

Of course it will be much more difficult to work without him. But work is continuing – thanks to Arseny Borisovich’s unfailing efforts Memorial did not become an organization with a single leader. Independence and responsibility was and will continue to be a key feature of the work of each of Memorial’s different sections and projects. And the results of our work always were and will continue to be presented to society by different individuals – many of whom are well known in Russia and the wider world.

The board will elect a new chair at its next meeting.

All Memorial’s projects are continuing as planned. New projects are being proposed, in the discussion and implementation of which a younger generation of Memorialists is playing an increasingly larger role.

Memorial’s work has been made steadily more difficult in recent years by growing pressure from the authorities (we can mention: the inclusion of our Krasnodar branch in the ‘foreign agent’ list for holding international academic conferences, the Yury Dmitriev case in Petrozavodsk, the latest defamatory NTV broadcast in January, the continuing pressure on the Human Rights Centre – in Chechnya at the start of new year, on the basis of a fabricated charge, the head of our Grozny office was arrested, which was followed by an arson attack on our office in Ingushetia, and the torching of our car in Dagestan.

Despite this – or perhaps because of it – more and more young people who share our views are coming to us with new approaches and fresh ideas. One of the most important tasks of recent years has been to sustain and widen the circle of our supporters, and this is bearing fruit and will continue to occupy us over the next few years.

It goes without saying that, without any doubt, we must preserve the legacy of A. B. Roginsky – including the publication of the writings which he did not manage to finish or prepare for publication. To a significant extent this was because he devoted so much time and effort to the preservation and development of Memorial in today’s increasingly difficult conditions.

We know that many are anxious about the fate of Memorial – and we want to say to all our friends that the work to which Arseny Roginsky contributed so much carries on. We appreciate your support and count upon it in the times ahead.

Board of the International Memorial Society
Moscow, 1 February 2018

Translated by Mary McAuley