♦ Police search apartment of Elena Abdullayeva ♦
On 28 February 2017 police searched the Moscow apartment of Elena ABDULLAYEVA, coordinator of the project “Gulagu.Nyet” [“No to the Gulag”] that collects information about human rights abuses in the penitentiary system, The Moscow Times reported. The search took place on the same day that police searched the family home of journalist and human rights campaigner Zoya SVETOVA.
Like Svetova Elena Abdullaeva is also a former member of the Moscow Public Oversight Commission. The Moscow Times reported:
“According to Eva Merkacheva, the commission’s deputy chairperson, who says she managed to speak to Abdullaeva, the police are supposedly looking for a ‘stolen mobile phone’.”
Abdullayeva’s son was detained in December 2016 in relation reportedly, to a suspected theft of a mobile and allegedly beaten by police. Abdullayeva claimed that the charges of theft had been fabricated.
Gulagu.net describes itself as a project against “corruption and torture in Russia”, uniting more than human rights defenders, volunteers and prisoners’ relatives. It was founded in September 2011 on the intitiative of activist and former prisoner Vladimir Osechkin, a controversial figure in human rights circles. According to its website, the association acts “transparently and within the law” to combat torture and corruption and protect the rights of persons in places of detention.
Over the first five years of its existence, says the website, 2,378,927 people visited Gulagu.net 5,194,048 times, with more than 17,278,700 page visits.
(R = Russian; e = English)
Gulagu.net website [R]
“Russian Police Raid the Home of Second Human Rights Worker in a Day”, The Moscow Times, 2 March 2017 [e]
Peter Oborne, “The dangers of exposing corruption in Russia’s jails”, Open Democracy, 8 August 2016 [e]
“Is ‘No to the Gulag’ against real rights activists?” pravozashchitniki urala, 10 November 2013 [R]