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Venice Commission criticizes Memorial liquidation and foreign agents law

Russian law on foreign agents is “a violation of international standards.” This was stated by the Venice Commission (an advisory body on constitutional law under the Council of Europe), criticizing the recent decision of the Supreme Court of the Russian Federation to liquidate the international organization “Memorial” (recognized in the Russian Federation as an NGO-foreign agent).

Memorial was “one of the most prominent public organizations in the field of human rights protection in the Russian Federation,” RBC quotes the commission’s statement.

They stressed that they consider the terminology of the legislation on foreign agents “imprecise and too broad”, and that “any punishment should be proportional to the offense.” “Administrative violations alone, even if they are repeated, are not sufficient grounds for the liquidation of NGOs,” the Venice Commission said.

As a reminder, on December 28, the Supreme Court of Russia satisfied the claim of the Prosecutor General’s Office against the international “Memorial”. The court ruled to liquidate the society and its structural organizations. And the very next day, the Moscow City Court liquidated the Memorial Human Rights Center (also recognized as an NGO-foreign agent) at the suit of the Moscow Prosecutor’s Office.

Source: Rosbalt

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