The Russian government’s latest refusal to grant permission for a peaceful demonstration in support of freedom of assembly in Moscow on January 31 is a blatant violation of the Constitution of the Russian Federation, as well as Russia’s international legal obligations to ensure freedom of assembly. Freedom House calls upon authorities to refrain from the use of force if the demonstration proceeds without a legal permit.
Freedom House is deeply concerned with the Chechen government’s attempts to intimidate and discredit prominent and internationally recognized human rights organization, Memorial, which has played a crucial role in exposing human rights violations and assisted hundreds of victims of abuse.
Freedom House congratulates Oleg Orlov, Lyudmila Alexeyeva and Sergei Kovalev of human rights group Memorial on winning the 2009 Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought, awarded by the European Parliament to "individuals or international organisations who - like Sakharov – have distinguished themselves in the struggle for human rights."
Freedom House urges the Russian and Georgian governments to address serious declines in human rights and democracy that were exacerbated by their war over the separatist republic of South Ossetia one year ago.
A majority of Americans see democracy in the U.S. as weak and getting weaker, according to a national survey released by The Democracy Project, a joint initiative of Freedom House, the George W. Bush Institute, and the Penn Biden Center for Diplomacy and Global Engagement.
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,” 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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