Nearly two decades after the fall of the Berlin Wall, a new Freedom House study finds widespread declines in democracy from Central Europe to Eurasia, with Russia ranked as a consolidated authoritarian regime for the first time.
Eight human rights groups and a prominent Russian activist are urging Russian President Dmitry Medvedev to ensure that business executives Mikhail Khodorkovsky and Platon Lebedev receive a fair second trial that upholds their human rights.
Freedom House welcomes Russia's decision to end its decade-long "counter-terrorism operation" against separatist rebels in Chechnya, but is concerned that human rights abuses and repression will worsen as Chechen President Ramzan Kadyrov further consolidates his power in the southern republic.
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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