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By claiming five prominent NGOs are ‘foreign agents,’ Russian authorities are deliberately and ruthlessly attacking civil society organizations that protect the fundamental rights and freedoms of Russian citizens.

Vladimir Putin came to power in large part due to his willingness to use brutal, indiscriminate force against Chechen “terrorists.” Now Putin appears to have the blood of 298 passengers and crew from Malaysia Air Flight 17 on his hands. Read David Kramer's American Interest op-ed.

Having called on the Obama administration for several months to show leadership in pushing back against Russian President Vladimir Putin for his ongoing aggression against Ukraine, Freedom House welcomes today's announcement of new, tougher U.S. sanctions targeting Russian banks and energy companies.

Freedom House continues to mourn the death of Natalya Estemirova, a dedicated and courageous human rights defender, whose life was tragically cut short because of her efforts to reveal human rights abuses in Chechnya.



Senior Program Officer for Europe and Eurasia

Gina S. Lentine is Senior Program Officer for Europe and Eurasia at Freedom House. 

Director, Europe and Eurasia programs

Marc Behrendt is the Director for Europe and Eurasia programs at Freedom House, with over 20 years of experience working in the Eurasia region in peacebuilding, governance and human rights.


Signature Reports

Special Reports

Contending with Putin's Russia

As President Barack Obama enters his second term, relations with Russia present him with a set of thorny problems. This package of materials includes policy proposals, a summary of Russian legal restrictions on NGOs, a chronology of repressive actions under Vladimir Putin since 2000, and graphs illustrating Russia's score declines in Freedom House's annual reports.


Promise and Reversal: The Post-Soviet Landscape Twenty Years On

“Promise and Reversal: The Post-Soviet Landscape Twenty Years On,” marks the 20th anniversary of the failed Soviet coup of August 19, 1991. The retrospective essay examines the changes in the political rights and civil liberties in the former Soviet Union over the last two decades, as well as includes graphs and rankings that illustrate the region's performance in the annual Freedom House publications Freedom in the World and Freedom of the Press. The report  concludes that there is a serious and disturbing failure to embrace democratic institutions in most of the post-Soviet region.


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