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What makes Putin tick, and what the West should do

Fiona Hill and Clifford G. Gaddy Friday, January 13, 2017 Editor’s Note:This piece is adapted with permission from “Mr. Putin: Operative in the Kremlin” By Fiona Hill and Clifford G. Gaddy (Brookings Institution Press, 2015). In the book, they aimed to answer the question of who is Russian President Vladimir Putin and what motivates him. The authors […]

RUSSIA: Religious freedom survey, January 2017

By Victoria Arnold, Forum 18 Russian laws restricting freedom of religion and belief have increased, as have prosecutions of people exercising this freedom. Given intensifying official hostility to independent public activities without state permission, freedom of religion and belief and interlinked human rights may in future be increasingly restricted. Since Vladimir Putin re-election as President […]

HRW Report: Threats To Human Rights Increased In 2016

Human Rights Watch (HRW) warns that human rights are increasingly in danger as strongman leaders in countries such as Russia, Turkey, and China step up their repression of dissent and populist parties rise in the West. The international rights group says in its World Report 2017 that the past 12 months have seen many authoritarian […]

View from abroad: Mitzvah Day in Belarus

Debra Brunner, Director of The Together Plan, blogs about bringing Mitzvah Day to five towns and cities in Belarus: Belarus is a much forgotten country in the heart of Europe: a dictatorship, which has a rich but troubled Jewish history. Once part of the Soviet Union, pre-war Belarus boasted a large and vibrant Jewish community and claims many […]

American-style JCC opens in Kiev with help from JDC

November 1, 2016 JTA) — The Ukrainian capital of Kiev, where Jewish cultural life has largely revolved around the city’s synagogues, opened its first American-style Jewish community center. Hundreds of guests attended the opening ceremony Tuesday for the Halom JCC in central Kiev, where it is expected to serve thousands of community members every month, […]

IFCJ, JDC to distribute $52 million in humanitarian aid to Jews in former Soviet Union

September 26, 2016 (JTA) — The International Fellowship of Christians and Jews has pledged $52 million to provide food and medicine to elderly Jews living in the former Soviet Union through the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee. The Food and Medicine Lifeline, a four-year, $13 million per year commitment, was announced Monday by the IFCJ. […]

Russia: Government against Rights Groups

In 2012 Russia’s parliament adopted a law that required nongovernmental organizations (NGO)s to register as “foreign agents” with the Ministry of Justice if they engage in “political activity” and receive foreign funding. The definition of “political activity” under the law is so broad and vague that it can extend to all aspects of advocacy and human rights work. […]

Ambassador Kelly’s Statement on Suspension of Russian NGO ‘Golos’

Below is a copy of the statement Ambassador Ian Kelly delivered to the Permanent Council in Vienna on July 4, 2013 regarding the six month suspension of Golos, a major independent election monitoring NGO. As delivered by Ambassador Ian Kelly Thank you, Mr. Chairman. The United States is deeply concerned by the Russian Ministry of […]

UCSJ Strongly Condemns Moscow Attack Against Russian NGO Office

The Union of Councils for Jews in the Former Soviet Union (UCSJ) strongly objects to the armed attack against the All-Russia Movement For Human Rights’ central office at Maly Kislovsky street in downtown Moscow on June 21, 2013. That evening, the FSB, Police and OMON officers and soldiers stormed their office, changed all locks, threw out […]

Stop the Persecution of Maxim Efimov

Maxim Efimov is a chairman of the Karelian regional branch of the inter-regional youth social charity organization “Youth Human Rights Group (YHRG).”  The Karelian branch of YHRG implements human rights protection programs and supports civic initiatives, in particular youth-oriented projects.   On 5 April 2012 the criminal case № 012012120035 against Maxim Efimov was opened […]