MOSCOW, January 15 (RAPSI) – The Sakharov Center, one of the leading Russian NGOs which which houses a museum of dissidence, faces a fine of up to $7,500 for allegedly violating an NGO law, attorney Yelena Pershakova told RAPSI on Thursday.

The administrative case against the Academician Sakharov human rights center and museum was initiated after a Justice Ministry audit in last December, which concluded that the center could be classified as a ‘foreign agent’.

Since November 2012, political NGOs funded from abroad were compelled by law to register as foreign agents. In June 2013, the Justice Ministry was granted authority to classify NGOs as foreign agents at its own discretion and included a number of organizations in its register.

The attorney said that the Justice Ministry audit concluded that the center’s activity were political, as the roundtable conferences and public talks held at the center contained “negative opinions about Russian state authorities,  their policies and legislation”.

The Sakharov Center was established in 1996, to preserve the legacy of Andrei Sakharov creator of thermonuclear weapons, stalwart human rights activist and Nobel Peace Prize winner.