Digest “Human Rights in Krasnodar Terrotory”. Vol#1, November 2012
Social Justice, an organization loyal to the authorities, carried out the first of a series of pickets in front of Yabloko’s Krasnodar regional branch offices. They protested certain «attacks» on President Vladimir Putin and accused Yabloko of working for Russia’s Western enemies. Picket organizer Vyacheslav Yushkin attacked journalist Nikolay Khizhnyak before the start of the picket and a short time later accused journalist Yury Vlasov of working for the State Department of the United States. Almost all of the mostly elderly picketers who were approached did not know the reason for which Social Justice had gathered them until the picket began.
Though the picket blocked pedestrian traffic, violating the administrative legal codes, the police did not interfere. When Vlasov asked the police to stop the violation, the police threatened him with administrative punishment.
6 November. Krasnodar. Yabloko Activist Detained at Party Offices. Unfair Trial.
On 6 November at around 14:20, activist Aleksey Mandrigelya was detained and brought to court. Trial began earlier than scheduled and journalists and witnesses were not allowed inside. At 15:00 Aleksey was sentenced to 15 days in jail for supposed insubordination to police during a peaceful protest on 16 October near the Krasnodar region’s administration. Aleksey announced a hunger strike.
At the 16 October event, a day after the Krasnodar Legislative Assembly elections during which observers recorded a high number of violations, protesters carried out an act of mourning for «deceased» fair elections. During this peaceful event, several solo protesters were detained with Aleksey Mandrigelya, as well as several people who laid a symbolic wreath in memory of the elections.
According to witnesses, around 20 people came to the protest. During the protest, a Cossack attacked a journalist and then tried to hide his face with his hat. A leader of the pro-Putin youth organization the Young Guard of United Russia Andrey Buldin, also an elected deputy of the Krasnodar Legislative Assembly, gave orders to police chief Alexander Papanov to detain people.
9 November. Aleksey Mandrigelya’s Appeal was Considered Behind Closed Doors
Chief justice Sitnikov violated laws by not allowing in Natalya Goncharova, counsel for the defense; furthermore, a group of ten people who had the lawful right to be present in the courtroom were prevented from entering by bailiffs for 40 minutes. The sentence was upheld and Aleksey Mandrigelya was led to an isolation ward which, despite the drop in temperature, was not heated.
28 November. Krasnodar. Unjust verdict for activist Anna Mikhailova was upheld.
Judge Evgenii Smirnov reconsidered an appeal in regards to the case against Yabloko and Environmental Watch on the North Caucasus activist Anna Mikhailova, which was initiated after her 26 August solo picket in defense of academic and environmental activist Suren Gazaryan. Gazaryan has been subject to persecution by the authorities and is serving out a suspended sentence for damage to an illegal fence surrounding Krasnodar Governor Tkachev’s villa.
Despite the incontestable evidence that Mikhailova carried out a solo picket which does not need authorization, Judge Smirnov considered the appeal for 5 minutes before upholding the previous sentence given out by a magistrate’s court, claiming that the activist was an organizer of an unsanctioned public event. Mikhailova is to pay a fine of 10,000 rubles (€250).
29 November. Tuapse. Persecution of a local politician.
Tuapse politician Evgenii Vitishko, also serving out a suspended sentence for damage to the illegal fence surrounding Krasnodar Governor Tkachev’s villa, is being persecuted by the local authorities. When he put in his nomination for head of the Krymsk district, he was faced with new problems from the criminal-executory inspection. On 29 November, a trial was to be held in which evidence of Vitishko’s violation of his sentence was to be presented. The representative from the criminal-executory inspection did not appear at the trial and the proceedings were postponed until 7 December.
At the end of November, the criminal-executory inspection issued several warnings to Vitishko because he had been in the Krymsk district, and they demanded that he be present in Tuapse every day from midnight to 6am. These demands and the postponement of the trial ruined Vitishko’s plans of running his election campaign.
30 November. Gelendzhik. Attack of civil rights activist.
An attack was carried out in Gelendzhik on activist Konstantin Andramonov, who opposed construction work on burial sites at 27 Gertsen Street.
On the morning of 30 November, near the local hospital, an unidentified assailant attacked Andramonov and knocked him to the ground with a blow to the head with a heavy object, after which he began to kick Andromonov’s body and head. Andramonov was unconsious for some time and then, after regaining consciousness, came to the hospital. He received medical attention and stitches on his leg and 7 stitches on his head and face.
Konstantin Andramonov and other activists have been threatened with physical violence for opposing the developers, and on one occasion, people protesting this construction have had rocks thrown at them. Andramonov filed a complaint with the local security services for the attack, beating, and theft of his cell phone. Police still refuse to instigate a criminal case.