Number of blacklisted NGOs could be increased to 20 - report
MOSCOW, July 9 (RAPSI) – The blacklist of undesirable foreign NGOs could be expanded to 20, Izvestia newspaper reported on Thursday, citing a high-ranking source in the upper house of parliament.
An official list of 12 undesirable organizations was read out at a Federation Council meeting on Wednesday. It will be forwarded to the Prosecutor General’s Office, which will then have to look into these NGOs for compliance with the law on undesirable organizations.
Among the NGOs on the blacklist are the Open Society Foundation (Soros Foundation), the National Endowment for Democracy (NED), the International Republican Institute (IRI), the National Democratic Institute for International Affairs (NDI), the MacArthur Foundation, Freedom House, the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation, Education for Democracy Foundation, the East European Democratic Center, the Ukrainian World Congress, the Ukrainian World Coordinating Council and the Crimean Human Rights Field Mission.
Izvestia writes that NED, IRI, NDI, the MacArthur Foundation, the Soros Foundation, Freedom House, the Foundation for Enterprise Development (FED), and the Charles Stewart Mott Foundation are the main recipients of funds from the US Agency for International Development (USAID), which was shut down in Russia in the fall of 2012 at the request of the Foreign Ministry. But USAID continued working in Russia through its partners, which were only blacklisted in 2015.
According to the newspaper, the Ford Foundation, the Jamestown Foundation, the Open Russia Foundation, the Eurasia Foundation, and the Albert Einstein Institution could be added to the list soon.
The newspaper writes that the Eurasia Foundation and the Ford Foundation issue grants to NGOs in Russia and other post-Soviet countries. They have evidently sponsored the Memorial historical and civil rights society and the Moscow Helsinki Group.
The Jamestown Foundation is focused on Russia’s North Caucasus, while the Open Russia Foundation, which was established by Mikhail Khodorkovsky and several other former Yukos employees, is supposedly financing Russian opposition groups.
Additions to the blacklist will be made by the Justice Ministry upon the recommendation of the Prosecutor General’s Office. However, the State Duma and the Federation Council can make suggestions as well, Izvestia writes.