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22 December 2016

posted 22 Dec 2016, 01:36 by Rights in Russia   [ updated 22 Dec 2016, 02:13 ]
Navalny Team Uncovers Miami Homes Belonging To Russian Mayor

Investigators working for Russian anticorruption crusader Aleksei Navalny have uncovered two luxury Miami apartments allegedly belonging to the mayor of Russia's fifth largest city. The findings, published in a December 21 report, were the latest in a series of investigations by Navalny, a lawyer, opposition leader, and now, presidential candidate who has become a thorn in the Kremlin’s side. Using Florida real estate records and the Russian federal database of official income declarations, Navalny’s team discovered the beachfront properties, whose value they estimated at more than $2 million. Navalny’s organization, known as the Anti-Corruption Foundation, said the apartments were acquired in December 2013 and July 2014. [...]
Source: RFE/RL [22 December 2016]

Report: Russian Hackers Tracked Ukrainian Artillery Units
A Russian hacking group known as Fancy Bear has likely used a malware implant on Android devices to track and target Ukrainian artillery units, a new report says. The malware was able to retrieve communications and some locational data from infected devices from late 2014 through 2016, the Virginia-based cybersecurity firm CrowdStrike said in the report released on December 22. It said the intelligence would have likely been used to strike against the artillery in support of Russia-backed separatists in eastern Ukraine. [...]
Source: RFE/RL [22 December 2016]

UN Creates Body To Prepare Syrian War Crimes Cases Over Russian Objections
The United Nations General Assembly, over strenuous objections from Russia and Syria, voted to establish a panel to prepare cases involving war crimes and human rights abuses in Syria. The resolution, drafted by Liechtenstein, was adopted by 105 to 15 on December 21, with 52 abstentions, despite warnings from Russia that the assembly was interfering in the work of the Security Council, where Russia has repeatedly blocked moves to prosecute alleged war crimes in Syria. Iran and China also were among those voting against the resolution. [...]
Source: RFE/RL [22 December 2016]

Open-Source Sleuths Document Extensive Russian Shelling Of Ukraine In 2014
Open-source investigator Bellingcat says Russia launched "systematic" artillery and other barrages against Ukraine in 2014 that were "essentially an act of war" against its smaller neighbor. In its December 21 report, titled Putin's Undeclared War, the group confirms Russia deliberately fired thousands of shells and missiles into eastern Ukraine in the opening months of a conflict in which Moscow has consistently denied playing any direct role. The barrages came at a crucial juncture in the separatism-fueled war and appear to have been aimed at helping pro-Moscow fighters repel Kyiv's efforts to retake areas held by the separatists. [...]
Source: RFE/RL [21 December 2016]

Activists Detained In Moscow Along With RFE/RL Journalists
Moscow police detained seven civil-society activists who said they were on their way to stage an event at Russia's Federal Security Service headquarters. Police bundled them into a minivan on December 20, along with a reporter and cameraman from RFE/RL's Russian service, who were covering the group. [...]
Source: RFE/RL [21 December 2016]

Russian Music Teacher Fired After Homophobe Crusader Complains About Her Piercings

A music teacher in the Russian city of Krasnoyarsk says she was forced to resign this week, after an anti-LGBT activist launched a public campaign against her, telling her coworkers, her supervisors, the police, and anyone who would listen about her "deviant ways." Maria Shetopalova is just 21 years old, but she says she’s already been a professional music teacher for several years at the Number IV Center for Supplementary Education. In blog posts published earlier this week on the Russian imageboard Pikabu, Shetopalova revealed that she is the latest victim of Timur Bulatov, St. Petersburg’s infamous “gay-teacher hunter.” [...]
Source: The Moscow Times [22 December 2016]

Neighbours of CTO casualties in Grozny report ban on commemoration

The homes of the young people, killed in the counterterrorist operation (CTO) in Grozny on December 17-18, after a series of attacks on policemen, fail to hold the commemoration ceremonies (tezet), mandatory in such cases, said the neighbours. According to their story, there is no one to hold the tezet, as almost all the males, detained at night on December 17 are still in custody at the police. [...]
Source: Caucasian Knot [20 December 2016]

In Dagestan, two persons killed in shootout with law enforcers
In the Karabudakhkent District, law enforcers shot and killed two policemen, who, according to the law enforcement authorities, opened fire when they attempted to stop their car to check the driver's documents. According to the Ministry of Internal Affairs (MIA), at about 10:00 p.m. on December 20, at the federal section of the road near the village of Manas of the Karabudakhkent District, policemen stopped a VAZ-2109 car to check the driver's documents. However, fire was opened on the law enforcers from the car. [...]
Source: Caucasian Knot [21 December 2016]

Russia's Supreme Court upholds sentence for Hizb ut-Tahrir member
The Supreme Court of Russia has upheld the sentence for Abdunabi Zoidov who was found guilty of participating in activities of Hizb ut-Tahrir terrorist organization banned in Russia, RAPSI reported from the court on Thursday. The court refused to grant an appeal against the Moscow District Military Court’s ruling sentencing Zoidov to four years and four months in prison. [...]
Source: RAPSI [22 December 2016]

Moscow school student’s sentence for joining far-right Ukrainian group reduced
The Supreme Court of Russia on Thursday mitigated a 6.5-year prison sentence given to Moscow school student Kirill Banetsky for joining Right Sector, a far-right Ukrainian group banned in Russia, and pushing for extremism, by 2 months, RAPSI reports from the courtroom. The convict said during the Thursday hearing that he returned from Right Sector of his own free will and did not have a chance to report his voluntary withdrawal from the organization because of the arrest. The young man pleaded guilty and repented all what he had done. Banetsky was convicted and sentenced in September 2016. In addition to the prison term, the Moscow District Military Court banned him from posting publicly-accessible materials on telecommunications networks for a year. [...]
Source: RAPSI [22 December 2016]

Sixteen persons sentenced for treason, espionage in Russia in 2016
Sixteen individuals have been convicted and sentenced in Russia for treason and espionage in 2016, RIA Novosti reported Wednesday, citing the Judicial Department at the Supreme Court. Thirteen persons were convicted of treason; three other individuals were condemned for spying. Only one of convicts has pleaded guilty. Courts have not delivered acquitting judgements in such cases, according to the court’s Judicial Department. Nine people were held liable for divulging state secrets in 2016. Eight persons were pardoned while one received a suspended sentence. In total, 261 individuals were condemned in Russia for crimes against constitutional order and internal security of the State; 45 of them were sentenced to real prison terms, 60 of them received suspended sentences. Courts also imposed alternative punishment in such cases including community service. [...]
Source: RAPSI [21 December 2016]

Russia ordered to pay €900 to 2010 football riot case convict
The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) has ordered Russia to pay €900 in compensation to Igor Berezyuk, who was convicted of participating in the 2010 Moscow riots waged by football fans and nationalists, lawyer Dmitry Agranovsky told RAPSI on Wednesday. The ECHR held that Russian authorities had violated Article 5 (Right to Liberty and Security) of the European Convention of Human Rights by illegally extending the detention of Berezyuk. [...]
Source: RAPSI [21 December 2016]