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General Rapporteur on the situation of human rights defenders reacts to the sentence of Vladimir Kara-Murza

PACE's General Rapporteur on the situation of human rights defenders, and rapporteur on political prisoners in Russia, Sunna Ævarsdóttir, (Iceland, SOC), today reacted to the sentence of Vladimir Kara-Murza, a Russian historian and opposition politician, to 15 days administrative detention for “disobeying a police order” (pronounced on 12 April).

“I deplore the arrest and sentence to 15 days administrative detention of Mr Kara-Murza, a prominent Russian opposition politician, long-time colleague of murdered opposition leader Boris Nemtsov. Mr Kara-Murza recently joined other figures to establish the Russian Anti-War Committee opposing the military attack on Ukraine. Last week, he participated as an expert in a hearing by PACE Committee on Legal Affairs and Human Rights on “political prisoners”. This detention and sentence takes place in the context of the unprecedented crackdown on civil society and opposition figures who oppose the war.

I call on the Russian authorities to release Mr Kara-Murza and stop all forms of reprisals and harassment of those who legitimately exercise their right to freedom of expression, in line with international human rights standards.”