Press Release

Putin, do not close down Memorial

Strasbourg
, 23.10.2014 - 12:12
Memorial - Sakharov Prize 2009

The EPP Group has strongly condemned Russia's Justice Ministry's appeal to the country's Supreme Court to close the independent rights organisation Memorial. In a Resolution adopted today by the European Parliament, EPP Group MEPs urge the Russian authorities to recall the lawsuit before the hearing scheduled for 13 November stressing that Memorial plays a crucial role in the development of democratic values and the promotion of human rights in Russia.

"Memorial - the 2009 Sakharov Prize laureate - has been at the forefront of human rights work. It has significantly contributed to the preservation of history and memory of Stalinist repressions with a view to not allowing history to repeat itself. Its role can never be underestimated and the attempts of Russian authorities to silence the truth are just another clear demonstration of the utter disregard for any international norms and modern standards, and are thus unacceptable”, said Jacek Saryusz-Wolski MEP, EPP Group Vice-Chairman responsible for Foreign Affairs.

The Resolution calls on the Russian authorities to put an end to any act of harassment, including at judicial level, against the Memorial Society, the human rights centre Memorial, their members, as well as all human rights defenders in the Russian Federation, and ensure in all circumstances that they are able to carry out their legitimate activities without any interference.

"We strongly condemn the intimidation campaign run by the Russian authorities against the only few remaining independent voices of the country’s civic society. We call on Russia to end the circle of fear and violence surrounding human rights defenders. Civil society activists everywhere must be free to exercise their most basic rights of freedom of thought and expression. The witch hunt against ‘foreign agents’ is actually another pretext to silence those looking for the truth", said the EPP Group Coordinator in European Parliament’s Foreign Affairs Committee, Cristian Preda MEP.

The European Parliament urges the European Commission and the EEAS to increase its financial assistance to Russian civil society and to include the EU-Russia Civil Society Forum in the Partnership Instrument in order to ensure sustainable and credible long-term support.

Note to Editors
The EPP Group is the largest political group in the European Parliament with 220 Members from 27 Member States

MEP Contacts

-
Jacek SARYUSZ-WOLSKI (Former MEP)
STR - Phone: +33 (0)3 88 175371 Fax: +33 (0)3 88 179371
Email: jacek.saryusz-wolski@europarl.europa.eu
-
Cristian Dan PREDA
STR - Phone: +33 (0)3 88 175261 Fax: +33 (0)3 88 179261
Email: cristiandan.preda@europarl.europa.eu

Press Contacts

Delia Vlase
(Former staff member)
Responsible for Communications Strategy
Agata Byczewska
Polish press; Communications Strategy; Pan-African Parliament; ACP; NATO
Phone: +32 473 841 093

Latest

In new Brexit talks, UK must clarify its goals
26.09.2017 - 15:16

In new Brexit talks, UK must clarify its goals

In the latest round of Brexit talks in Brussels this week, the EPP Group says the UK must make concrete proposals. Group Chairman Manfred Weber says...
CETA
20.09.2017 - 10:42

Europe leads on rules-based trade: CETA comes into force

Following seven years of negotiations, the Comprehensive and Economic Trade Agreement (CETA) will provisionally enter into force tomorrow. "The...
Euro symbol in the magnifying glass
14.09.2017 - 12:41

EPP Group deplores attempts to keep NGO financing secret

In a vote today the EPP Group rejected attempts to keep NGO financing a secret. Hiding behind calls for transparency in this House, the Greens and...
State of the Union, Fipronil scandal, Turkey, Venezuela
14.09.2017 - 12:00

State of the Union, Fipronil scandal, Turkey, Venezuela

At the European Parliament’s latest plenary, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker proposed plans to strengthen the EU27 as Brexit...

Highlights of the week

25.09.2017 - 29.09.2017
European Ideas Network

EIN: debating the future of common security and stability in the Mediterranean

'Common Security and Stability in the Mediterranean Region' is the main subject of the European Ideas Network's (EIN, the EPP Group's...
Gavel and european union flag

Setting up the European Public Prosecutor’s Office

The proposal to establish a European Public Prosecutor’s Office will be voted on in the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs...
Construction worker doing measuring

The Services Package - an alternative to enforcement action?

Services represent two-thirds of the EU economy already and about 90% of job creation - for around 47 million people (22% of the European labour...
Viviane Reding MEP