MOSCOW, March 29 (RAPSI, Diana Gutsul) – The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) has combined forty-nine appeals filed by sixty-one Russian non-governmental organizations (NGOs) over the national “foreign agents” law and has communicated them, lawyer Irina Khrunova told RAPSI on Wednesday.
Among the NGOs behind the appeals are the Moscow School of Civil Education, Regional Press Institute, the Freedom of Information Foundation, human rights association Memorial, the Golos association in defense of voters’ rights and numerous other organizations.
ECHR filed series of questions to Russian government regarding these applications.
The law adopted in November 2012 requires that all NGOs engaged in political activity and receiving foreign funding register as “foreign agents”.
Under the amendments to the law adopted in 2016, political activity is linked to such fields as state-building, securing Russia’s sovereignty and territorial integrity, enforcement of law, order and security, national defense, foreign policy, political system integrity, social and economic and national development of the country, regulation of rights and freedoms of man and citizen.
NGOs which are engaged in organization and holding of public events, including meetings, manifestations, demonstrations, discussions and performances would be deemed to be involved in political activity.
Moreover, those NGOs which are involved in work aimed at achieving certain results during elections or referendum, vote monitoring practices, establishment of election commissions or support of political parties would also be put on the list of those organizations which are engaged in political activity.