The Supreme court (VS) Tatarstan on Wednesday, February 10, upheld the claim of the Ministry of justice, which is required to liquidate one of the leading human rights organizations — Association “Agora”. This was reported by the lawyer “Agora” Ramil ahmetgaliev. According to him, this is the first Russian court decision on liquidation of the NCO, adopted after the claim of the Ministry of justice.
The Association brings together 35 lawyers in more than 40 regions of Russia, has been providing free legal aid and legal education. The lawyers of “Agora” was defended on the last few years, defendants in the most high profile cases.
Lawyers of “Agora” worked at the court of the “Bolotnaya case”, represented the interests of Pussy Riot members Nadezhda Tolokonnikova and Maria Alekhina, accused of terrorism Ukrainian Director Oleg Sentsov, arrested for arson of the doors of the building of the FSB at the Lubyanka of the artist Peter Pavlenkova.
“The forced liquidation of the Association for her human rights activities, we believe the recognition of its effectiveness, the extreme sensitivity of the authorities and unambiguous repressive step, demonstrating the true purpose of the state policy in respect of non-governmental organizations in Russia,” said ahmetgaliev. The Russian Constitution allows the elimination of the human rights organization, “but in the presence of a strictly defined set of elements”, explained the lawyer.
The decision to file a lawsuit in court to liquidate the organization, according to the lawyer, the Ministry of justice adopted, considering the organization of violating the law on NGOs — foreign agents. Agora, according to the Ministry of justice, tried to shape public opinion and influence the government policy, refused to include themselves in the registry of foreign agents and even tried to get out of it after was entered by force.
Political activities in the Ministry of justice found in the “law school “Agora” and in an interview with the leaders of the Association of the national media.
According to Akhmetgaliev, in his statement of claim the Ministry of justice gives any argument in favor of the thesis that “Agora” is a threat to national security, constitutional order, lives and health of other citizens, and admitted her violations were of a fatal character.
Since the establishment and until today, “Agora”, says the lawyer, provided Pro Bono activities, has never organized a public event, not assisted political parties and politicians and did not participate in any form in the electoral processes.
Ahmetgaliev recalled the decision of the Presidium of the Supreme arbitration court dated 28 July 2011, stating that the provision of “Agora” legal assistance to citizens falls under the definition of “charitable purpose”. At the same time every three years, the Ministry conducted routine checks of the organization, and between planned and unplanned, remind the NRA.
Several times the “Agora” was subject to extensive background checks by government agencies. In 2009, NCO was checked simultaneously, employees of the national offices of the Ministry of justice, Prosecutor’s office, tax service, interior Ministry and Rosfinmonitoring. Following extensive validation of Supervisory authorities occurred in 2013-2014: then there were five inspections of the Prosecutor’s office of Tatarstan.