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'Movement of the 14%' on the cases of Viktor Chirikov and Aleksei Knedlyakovsky [Facebook]

posted 1 Jan 2017, 09:53 by Rights in Russia   [ updated 1 Jan 2017, 10:02 ]
28 December 2016

Source: Facebook page of Movement of the 14%

Remember how we marked Chekists’ Day on 20 December? We wanted to release balloons (which were not balloons at all) next to the FSB building, but we were detained as we walked along the road. And Pierre Haffner, our friend and supporter, a citizen of France, was attacked by FSB officer ‘Zhenya-FSB’. Then we were driven around for three hours in a police bus.

But we weren’t the only ones who merrily celebrated the ‘holiday’. On 20 December someone in Krasnodar marked the day by mounting a wooden cross on the memorial to Feliks Dzerzhinsky. Two Krasnodar environmentalists – activists from Environmental Watch Viktor Chirikov and Aleksei Knedlyakovsky – have been accused of doing this.

In March 2016 they had proposed removing the memorial or moving it to another place. Trees would be planted at the location instead, and the green zone would be called Square in Memory of Victims of Politcal Repression. Environmental Watch issued a statement saying: "This political leader of the early Soviet period not only had no relation to Krasnodar, but became famous as one of the initiators of the Red Terror.” 

Viktor Chirikov and Aleksei Knedlyakovsky themselves state they had nothing to do with the mounting of the cross on the memorial. Despite that, on 22 December the two men were detained by the police. They were charged with ‘petty hooliganism’ under Article 20.1 of the Russian Administrative Code. The trial lasted a mere four minutes. The main evidence was a very faded photo in which Judge Stanislav Burenko said he recognized Knedlyakovsky and Chirikov. He handed down the maximum possible sentence.

The environmentalists were sent to a special police detention centre in Krasnodar to serve their sentences. Two days ago Viktor Chirikov spoke with the deputy coordinator of Environmental Watch, Dmitry Shevchenko, by phone and said that the conditions in which the activists were being detained were not only close to torture, but essentially were torturous. They are held in a small cell that does not meet regulation standards. There are 11 people in the 11 square metre cell, in other words each person has one square meter of space. There is no access at all to fresh air in the cells and most of those detained are continuously smoking. The detainees have limited access to drinking water, and this at a time when the two men have been on hunger strike since the first day of their detention, and already are into their sixth day without food.

Today it became known that an ambulance was called to Viktor Chirikov because of a sudden deterioration in his health.

Aleksei Knedlyakovsky’s health also continues to deteriorate, and the conditions of detention remain inhuman.

In connection with the above, we are starting a 'One Good Deed' marathon. We ask people to phone Krasnodar Public Oversight Commission or send them an e-mail. We are also asking people to write an appeal to the electronic address of the Krasnodar prosecutor’s office.

The text of the appeal reads as follows:
I have learned from the media that persons subjected to a jail term under administrative law are being kept in torturous conditions. They are detained in a cell that is smaller than the legal minimum. There are 11 people held in a cell measuring 11 square metres, in other words one square metre for each person. There is no access to fresh air in the cell. The detainees have limited access to drinking water. For these reasons, we ask you to conduct an inspection of the Special Police Detention Centre for the detention of persons subject to a jail term under administrative law in the city of Krasnodar.


Electronic address of Krasnodar Public Oversight Commission:

Electronic address of the Public Prosecutor’s Office of Krasnodar city:…/obrashchenie-k-prokuroru-…

Form for submitting appeals via Internet to the FSB of Russia via the Public Oversight Commission's website:

The Public Oversight Commission can be contacted by phone to demand that an inspection be conducted of the Special Detentioin Centre:
Mardyko Valery: +7928-410-68-80;
Pastor Belikov Viktor +7918- 633-14-96, +7952-852-82-82;
Popova Natalya Mikhailovna: +7918-360-87-47