Person of the Week: Ildar Dadin

posted 9 Jan 2017, 03:48 by Rights in Russia   [ updated 9 Jan 2017, 03:49 ]
On 2/1 Lev Ponomarev, director of the NGO For Human Rights, and Aleksei Venediktov, editor-in-chief of Ekho Moskvy radio station, sent a letter to the Federal Penitentiary Service demanding the authorities reveal Ildar Dadin’s location. As The Moscow Times reported, 'opposition activist, Ildar Dadin, has been incommunicado for over a month while being transferred to another prison, and activists say his relatives “fear for his life and health”.' In addition to Ponomarev and Venediktov, St. Petersburg legislator Boris Vishnevsky also demanded information from the Federal Penitentiary Service. 'In his letter, Ponomarev emphasized that Dadin’s relatives fear for his safety because he had revealed torture in prison,' The Moscow Times wrote, 'Officials might try to punish him for speaking out, they worry.' The hashtag #ГдеИльдарДадин (#WhereIsIldarDadin) has featured widely on social media in Russia. On 4/1 RFE/RL reported on the latest in a series of protests over the treatment of Ildar Dadin. When a group of six people attempted to protest outside the offices of the Public Prosecutor in Moscow, calling for the disclosure of Dadin's whereabouts, they were detained by police and held in custody for four hours. 'Prominent opposition politician Aleksei Navalny tweeted two photos of a woman whom he described as a lone protester,' RFE/RL reported, 'One photo depicts the woman holding a placard reading "Where is Ildar Dadin?" and another condemning "torture in Russian concentration camps." The second photo shows the woman being escorted away by two policemen.' Last month, Russian human rights campaigners draped a banner calling for Dadin's release from a St. Petersburg bridge.

Ildar Dadin is the first person to be convicted under the draconian Article 212.1 of the Russian Criminal Code that criminalizes repeat violations of the law regulating public assembly. In December 2015 Ildar Dadin was sentenced to 2.5 years in prison. 

'Russian Rights Activists Demand Information on Imprisoned Dissident's Whereabouts,' The Moscow Times, 3 January 2017
'Russian Police Briefly Detain Six Supporters Of Jailed Activist,' RFE/RL, 4 January 2017