11 Nov 2021 19:14

Prosecutor General's Office asks Russian Supreme Court to shut down int'l organization Memorial

MOSCOW. Nov 11 (Interfax) - The Russian Supreme Court will consider in late November a request from the Russian Prosecutor General's Office to shut down international civil society organization International Historical Educational Charitable and Human Rights Society Memorial (designated a foreign-agent NGO in Russia) and its subdivisions.

"The court hearing to consider the administrative lawsuit of the Russian Prosecutor General's Office seeking this organization's dissolution is slated for 11:00 a.m. Moscow Time on November 25," a court representative told Interfax.

Memorial has described the decision as political, adding that "there are no legal grounds for the dissolution of International Memorial."

The organization said that the Prosecutor General's Office explained the move with the effect of the Russian foreign-agent law that the organization is allegedly systematically violating. In particular, this is a lack of foreign-agent marking on materials published by the organization

International Memorial was placed on the register of foreign-agent NGOs in Russia in 2016.

Over the past years, the organization has been repeatedly fined by Russian courts for violating Russia's foreign-agent law.

"International Historical Educational Charitable and Human Rights Society Memorial (International Memorial) is a non-commercial organization studying political repressions in the USSR and in present-day Russia," the organization's website says.

"International Memorial was founded in 1992 in Moscow. Its predecessor, Moscow initiative group Memorial, emerged in 1987 and gave rise to a number of regional organizations and groups. In 1989, they all united under the name of All-Union Voluntary History and Education Society Memorial (registered in 1990). Andrey Sakharov was one of the organizers and the first honored chair of Memorial Society," it says.