Supreme Court of Russia liquidates Memorial

Russia's Supreme Court rules to abolish Memorial Society

The Supreme Court of Russia has liquidated the historical, educational, charitable and human rights organisation Memorial, which is recognised in Russia as a non-profit foreign agent, following a lawsuit from the Office of the Prosecutor General, RIA Novosti reports.

At a court session held on December 28, the claim was supported by representatives of the Ministry of Justice and communications watchdog Roskomnadzor.

During the meeting, Aleksey Zhafyarov, a representative for the Office of the Prosecutor General, accused Memorial of rehabilitating Nazi accomplices. According to the official, the organisation also speculates on the topic of repression, representing the USSR as a terrorist state.

“We are forced to witness attempts to rehabilitate Nazi criminals. This is because someone is paying for it - and this is the real reason why Memorial fights so carefully not to be referred to as a foreign agent,” the representative for the Office of the Prosecutor General said at court.

Over the past two years, the organisation has never addressed to the Office of the Prosecutor General with a request to recognize anyone a victim of repressions, Zhafyarov added.

The Office of the Prosecutor General sued the International Memorial Society on November 11 due to multiple violations of the Russian law on foreign agents. The organisation denies such allegations claiming that the case is political in nature.

International Memorial was founded in 1992 in Moscow. Prior to that, Memorial public group had been founded in 1987. In 1989, they united into the All-Union Historical and Educational Society Memorial. Today the society is engaged in human rights, educational and research activities dedicated to political repression in the USSR. In 2016, Russia's Ministry of Justice included the organisation on the register of organizations performing the functions of a foreign agent. The decision obliged Memorial to make appropriate markings in its publications.

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