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Russian Federation: Arrest and charges against human rights defender Stanislav Dmitrievsky
On 23 July 2012, Mr Stanislav Dmitrievsky was arrested in Nizhny Novgorod for participating in a protest against the demolition of an historical building.
Stanislav Dmitrievsky is the head of the Russian-Chechen Friendship Society, a human rights organisation registered in Finland, and is active in the civil society movement against the reportedly unlawful de-listing and demolition of buildings of cultural significance.
On 23 July, at about 10 am, the police, led by the Deputy Head of Department of Interior Affairs of Nizhny Novgorod Region, arrested Stanislav Dmitrievski and took him to police station No.5. The police arrested two more individuals including a former member of the Russian-Chechen Friendship Society. All three were charged with violating Article 19.3 of the Administrative Code for “not following instructions of the police”, which is punishable by a fine and/or administrative arrest of up to 15 days. They are expected to appear before a court later today.
Arrested for taking part in protest at demolition of historic bulding.
Stanislav Dmitrievski had gathered with a group of approximately 15 individuals at the intersection of Gorkiy Street and Studyoni Street in Nizhny Novgorod, to protest against the demolition of an historical building. The building was listed as a protected architectural monument until last year, when it was taken off the list in alleged violation of applicable procedures. Civil society organisations have repeatedly raised concerns about alleged corruption and irregularities in the process leading to the de-listing and demolition of a number of historical buildings.
This is the second arrest and possible sentencing of Stanislav Dmitrievsky in a month. He was previously arrested, in similar circumstances, on 18 June 2012 and sentenced by the Nizhny Novgorod Regional Court to 15 days' administrative detention. It is also reported that a separate complaint was filed against Stanislav Dmitrievsky following his intervention in the case of a protester who had been arrested by security agents and forcibly brought to a psychiatric hospital, allegedly to test whether he was fit for the military service despite having been previously exonerated.
Stanislav Dmitrievsky repeatedly targeted for his human rights work.
Front Line Defenders is concerned at the arrest and trial against Stanislav Dmitrievsky and his repeated targeting in recent years. Front Line Defenders issued a number of urgent appeals on Stanislav Dmitrievsky, including in April 2011 (https://www.frontlinedefenders.org/node/15044) when he was called in for questioning in relation to his work on the documentation of human rights abuses in Chechnya.
Front Line Defenders urges the authorities in the Russian Federation to immediately and unconditionally release Stanislav Dmitrievsky and drop the charges against him.