Person of the Week: Aleksandr Valov

posted 13 Jun 2016, 08:07 by Rights in Russia   [ updated 13 Jun 2016, 08:30 ]
On 4 June 2016 blogger and journalist Aleksandr Valov, who is editor of the BlogSochiRu website, was sentenced to 5 days in jail on charges of ‘organizing a public event in a near-border zone’ under Article 20.1 of the Russian Criminal Code. Tetyana Lokot, writing in Global Voices, reports that Aleksandr Valov was arrested on 3 June while he was working with a US HBO film crew near Sochi. 'The journalists,' Lokot writes, 'were reportedly investigating claims of misuse of real estate properties constructed during the 2014 Winter Olympic Games. [...] Valov was detained on June 3 near the border between Russia and Abkhazia together with another Russian journalist, Dmitry Saltykovsky, and a six-person film crew from US channel HBO. Initially, law enforcement claimed they were operating in a near-border zone without “necessary permits.” The US citizens were released after seven hours, while the two Russian journalists were detained further and transported to the FSB headquarters in Sochi. Dmitry Saltykovsky, who worked as an interpreter for the HBO crew, was released, but fined 1,000 rubles ($15), according to the journalists’ lawyer, Aleksandr Popov, on Twitter.'

Aleksandr Valov told the Caucasian Knot website that together with Dmitry Saltykovsky he had been accused of “organizing events,” despite that fact taht they had been working with the journalists and had gone to the area to look at and film houses that had been put up for sale by the Sochi city administration. 

Photo: Facebook

Tetyana Lokot, Blogger Arrested After Helping US Journalists Report on Olympic Real Estate in Sochi , Global Voices, 6 June 2016
Aleksandr Valov: Facebook