UCSJ Statement Regarding Threats to Tatyana Lokshina

The international organization Human Rights Watch (HRW) has informed UCSJ that Tatyana Lokshina, Deputy Director of HRW Moscow office, received nine text messages (SMS) from September 28th- 30th that directly threatened her and her future child. Lokshina was the Director of the UCSJ Bureau in Moscow in the early 1990s and also has worked with the Moscow Helsinki Group and Demos.

HRW has asked the Russian authorities to bring the guilty people to justice. Russian Ombudsman Vladimir Lukin also has requested that the Ministry of Interior pay attention to these threats. Lokshina believes that these text messages could have included cell phone tracking technology to monitor her calls.

These serious threats were issued before Lokshina’s upcoming visit to Dagestan, and she has decided to cancel the trip as a result. She had previously issued reports about the war in the Caucuses, and had planned to monitor cases of torture and killing without trials for the next HRW report.

The UCSJ requests that the Russian officials defend Tatyana Lokshina and other human rights activists. Rather than interfering, UCSJ believes that these officials ought to help monitor and improve the situation regarding fundamental freedoms.

Larry Lerner, UCSJ President

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