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About OVD

OVD-Info was launched by volunteers in 2011 as a means of quickly monitoring arrests during mass protests. It has evolved into a full-scale analytical project dealing with law enforcement issues in Russia. Find out how you can help here.

Articles by OVD

This week’s front page editor

Rosemary Bechler is a mainsite editor of openDemocracy

Constitutional conventions: best practice

Dmitry Borisov, convicted in Russia's 26 March Case, has been released

Borisov was convicted for raising his foot in the air as police carried him off during a 2017 anti-corruption protest in Moscow. 

Russia: three years for a smashed head. A concert broken up. And, once again, torture

The latest in freedom of assembly news from Russia, via OVD-Info. 

Police bring charges to your work place, bed bugs instead of torture and a hunger strike

The latest in freedom of assembly news from Russia, via OVD-Info. 

“Down with the tsar”: Russian authorities ban Navalny supporter protest ahead of Putin's inauguration

Organisers across the country have been detained ahead of Vladimir Putin's fourth inauguration as president. 

“He’s not our tsar”: Navalny supporters prepare for new protest on 5 May

While a Russian state agency attempts to close down the internet, protests in Armenia are resonating in Moscow

In Moscow region, campaigners against a landfill site are being arrested

This week, while a Russian government media watchdog is bringing a lawsuit against the Telegram messaging app, campaigners against landfill sites outside Moscow are being arrested. 

Russia: six more years of repression

Vladimir Putin may have been elected, but threats to freedom of assembly and asssociation aren't going anywhere. 

Harassment, detention and torture: Russia’s presidential election is marred by repression

Russian law enforcement and the security services have been given carte blanche to beat, intimidate, torture and fabricate cases before the elections.

Russian activists face prosecution in the run up to the presidential elections

Law enforcement are prosecuting activists left, right and centre ahead of the elections, stigmatising public activity and protest. 

“Young people gathered to voice a silent reproach”: Dmitry Borisov’s closing statement in court

This Russian activist received a one-year prison sentence for allegedly kicking a police officer during an anti-corruption rally in March 2017. 

Russian protester gets one-year prison sentence for waving his leg in the air (while he was carried off by police)

This week, a Russian activist was prosecuted in a landmark trial that is being used to restrict freedom of assembly — and punish citizens who try to assert it. 

"At the first shock I couldn’t help but groan and shake"

More details emerge around the Russian anarchist case, in which several people were tortured by the security services.

This week in Russia: violence and impunity

The echoes of a planned national revolution continue to resound in Russia, as more people are swept up by the security services. 

Torture, Penza, Petersburg

More information on the Russian security services' arrest and torture of anarchists and anti-fa in Petersburg and Penza emerges. 

Russian authorities take aim at anti-fascists in St Petersburg

Extra-judicial means are being used to pressure and detain anti-fascist activists in Russia. 

Election season in Russia: violent acts and criminal cases against rights defenders, political activists

This week, the pressure on rights defenders, Open Russia and Navalny activists has turned increasingly violent. 

Chechnya's repressive machine keeps spinning

This week, Chechen human rights defender Oyub Titiev was arrested on trumped-up possession charges. 

The 26 March case: how Russia is cracking down on freedom of assembly

In March 2017, Russia witnessed its largest public protests in years. But investigations into the events of that day are being used to punish participants. RU

Six years of OVD-Info

Hundreds of hours spent on the phone, online and in court — this is what it means to monitor politically-motivated arrests in Russia. 

This week, detention and a tragic death at the hands of Russian law enforcement

Attempts by Russian law enforcement in Crimea to detain a veteran of the Crimean Tatar national movement led to her death. 

This week, Russian citizens have been arrested for intolerance towards Cossacks

Our partners at OVD-Info give us the latest on freedom of assembly and political detentions in Russia. 

Russia: last Sunday’s “revolution” in numbers

This week, the Russian authorities have detained 484 people on the streets. The pretext? A crackdown on an attempted nationalist revolution. 

Artpodgotovka: six days to destroy a movement

This week has seen members of a Russian radical nationalist movement searched, detained and charged with various offences, including terrorism.

Pynya, go away!

This week in Russia there’s been something of everything — arrests, assaults and bannings. But at least three people have been released from prison.

Russia's anti-corruption protests: detentions, detentions, detentions

The pressure on Russian individiuals and organisations involved in anti-corruption rallies continues. 

Reasons for arrest: anti-capitalism, separatism and “political hatred”

This week, Russian law enforcement gets inventive as it detains activists across the country.  

A metal pipe for your trouble

The Russian authorities’ campaign against Alexey Navalny is getting violent. 

Russia’s gubernatorial elections marred by political pressure

Seventeen Russian regions went to the polls this week. Activists and politicians have, however, been met with significant pressure and restrictions at polling stations. 

Russian court acquits journalist Sergei Vilkov of defamation charges

But don’t worry, there’s plenty more bad news.

For once, no one charged in Russia's Bolotnaya Square case is officially in prison

That is, if you don’t count psychiatric hospital or house arrest. 

“We are love”: Russian LGBT and feminist activists attacked

This week, LGBT activists in St Petersburg and feminists in Krasnodar were threatened and attacked.

“This trial turned out to be unique and dystopian in the Orwellian sense”

This week, Russia’s anti-extremism legislation took another four casualties.

This week’s challenges for Russian civil society: deportations, harassment, beatings

Attacks on rights activists, harassment of Alexei Navalny's campaign and the slow-motion terror of deportation to Uzbekistan. 

Attacks on Russian journalists must stop

A series of assaults on Russian journalists this week accompany a continuing campaign against anti-corruption activists.

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