Russian security services may have used agent provocateur to frame up anti-fascists

January 31, 2019

Anti-fascists have launched an international campaign to defend Russian activists who have been arrested, tortured in detention, and charged with terrorism-related offences in the “Network” case.

The Federal Security Service (FSB) claims that 11 people arrested in St Petersburg and Penza were part of an underground terrorist group seeking to sow disorder ahead of the 2018 Russian Presidential elections and the football World Cup.

Several of the detainees have described in detail how they were tortured by the FSB. For example, Viktor Filinkov described how he was tortured with an electric shocker after being

Demonstrators in London on 19 January, showing solidarity with the “Network” case defendants

detained at St Petersburg Pulkovo Airport in January 2018. Filinkov stated that FSB officers put him in a minivan, and then drove him around the city while torturing him into learning a forced confession.

The quasi-official Public Monitoring Commission has compiled evidence of torture, and the issue was raised on the Kremlin’s own Presidential Council for Civil Society and Human Rights. Nevertheless, preparations for what the defendants and their families describe as a show trial continue.

On 19 January, demonstrations in solidarity with the defendants were held in Moscow, St Petersburg, Kyiv, London and other European and American cities. (Information on the London event here and here.)

On 17 January, defendant Igor Shishkin received three and a half years for participation in a terrorist organisation. Shishkin admitted his guilt and came to a pre-trial agreement with the investigation. Most other defendants have renounced their confessions, referring to the fact that they were tortured by FSB officers.

The following text, by TATYANA LIKHANOVA of the independent Russian newspaper Novaya Gazeta, describes the use of what appears to be an agent provocateur in the “Network” case. This agent, who attended the same sports club as one of the case’s investigators in Penza, previously gave information to Ilya Shakursky, one of the defendants, and appears to have encouraged Shakursky to take radical action. We translated it with the author’s permission.

***

Following the conviction of Igor Shishkin, his lawyer Dmitry Dinze published several extracts from the case materials in a Facebook post. According to this post, a certain “V.I. Kabanov Read the rest of this entry »

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“Russia’s ‘anti-fascist’ fascism is not a far-away, exotic reality.” It’s here

January 20, 2019

What they said at the 19 January demonstration in London to support Russian anti-fascists

More than 150 people marched through the east end of London on Saturday, to voice solidarity with anti-fascists in Russia.

The march was held on 19 January, the tenth anniversary of the killing in Moscow of two prominent Russian anti-fascists – Stanislav Markelov, a lawyer, and Anastasia Baburova, a journalist. The date was marked by demonstrations in Moscow, St Petersburg, Kyiv and other cities in Russia and Ukraine.

The event expressed solidarity with 11 Russian anti-fascists who have been arrested and tortured in detention in the so-called “network” case. These young people have been

The London demonstration on Saturday

beaten up, struck repeatedly with electric shockers (like cattle prods), hung upside down and suffocated by security services officers.

The London event started at the Cable Street mural, which commemorates the “battle of Cable Street” in 1936, when the fascists were driven out of the east end. It ended at Altab Ali Park, named after a young Bangladeshi textile worker killed by fascists in 1978.

Right-wing radicalism grows from social injustice, M from Russia said to the marchers in a speech before they set out. “As long as we have rich and poor, people will be angry”, he Read the rest of this entry »


Relentless repression in Russia: why we will demonstrate on Saturday 19 January

January 14, 2019

On Saturday 19 January we will demonstrate in London, in solidarity with Russian anti-fascists. Eleven of them, who have been arrested, tortured and accused of fabricated “terrorism” charges, are awaiting trial. Many others have faced a relentless campaign of persecution by officers of the federal security services (FSB) and the police – which is reviewed in this article.

Please join us on Saturday, to support the Russian anti-fascists and strengthen international solidarity against fascism, xenophobia and state terror. Please re-post and share this article.

Details of our London event here.

 

2018 summary

By Misha Shubin, 31 December 2018 (Original Russian text here)

I’ve also decided to sum up the year’s results. Not the results for me, but rather to remember what happened to anarchists and leftists in Russia in 2018. This post will be long and many of you know about, or heard something about, the events that I recount here.

Protest in Russia about the “network case”, summer 2018. The poster reads: “electric shocker: confessions 100% guaranteed”

But I think it is very important not to forget about all this. [Note. Links from the original article to Russian-language sources are included. Links to English translations or relevant articles in English added where available. Translator.]

 

The “Network Case”

Eleven anarchists and anti-fascists have been arrested. They are accused of setting up a terrorist group and preparing terrorist actions. According to the Federal Security Service (FSB), they wanted to organise an armed uprising in Russia.

Almost all the evidence has been gathered with the help of torture. The detainees were beaten up. Some of them were tortured with the help of shocks from a stationary electric dynamo, others with hand-held electric shockers [similar to cattle prods]. At least one of the accused, Dmitry Pchelintsev, was hung upside down.

The accused are: Yegor Zorin, Ilya Shakursky, Vasilii Kuksov, Dmitry Pchelintsev, Arman Read the rest of this entry »


From a Russian prison: “Give people freedom, let them be carefree”

January 11, 2019

On Saturday 19 January we will be demonstrating in London in solidarity with Russian anti-fascists, including those being incarcerated and tortured by the security services. Please come to join us – meeting at the mural in Cable Street, London E1 0BL at 2.0pm. There will also be events that day – the tenth anniversary of the notorious killing of anti-fascists Stanislav Markelov and Anastasia Baburova in Moscow – in Russia and Ukraine, and other European countries.  

Here is a message to supporters, sent to mark the new year by the imprisoned anti-fascist Viktor Filinkov, who was arrested in St Petersburg in January 2018 and tortured by officers of

Viktor Filinkov, under guard, on his way to a court appearance. Photo: Rupression

the federal security service (FSB). He and 10 others are in detention, awaiting trial on trumped-up “terrorism” charges denounced as fraudulent by human rights organisations, in the so-called “network case”. Please share and re-post.

==

Viktor Filinkov wrote a letter to Grandad Frost [a Russian fairytale character, like Santa Claus] in Veliky Ustyug [where he lives, according to legend] and sent us a draft for review.

Hello, Grandad Frost!

I am writing to you from St Petersburg, from the same place where Lenin served time.

In the new year 2019, I would like you to give at least a little justice to all those in need.

Help the regional heads of Memorial, Yuri Dmitriev from Karelia and Oyub Titiyev from Chechnya. [Memorial is Russia’s largest human rights campaign organisation. Dmitriev was framed by local security services on child pornography charges. A court found him not Read the rest of this entry »


“Electric shock is our way of doing things”

December 31, 2018

Between October 2017 and February 2018, the Russian security services tortured several Russian anarchists and anti-fascists as part of an investigation into alleged terrorism offences. As a result, eleven people in St Petersburg and Penza have been arrested and charged in the “Network” case. They are being detained awaiting trial in 2019. [There will be demonstrations to support them on Saturday 19 January (details at the end of the article).] Those tortured have spoken out about their treatment – Viktor Filinkov did so here, and others did via the rupression web site. This article by Tatyana Likhanova explains the reaction by the Russian security services and other officials. It reports on investigations into the defendants’ claims of torture by the Russian Investigative Committee, the St Petersburg Public Monitoring Commission, and the defendants’ lawyers. It was published in Novaya Gazeta, the main liberal opposition newspaper, on 16 December 2018, and also published in English in Freedom News.

“Federal Security Service [FSB] officers don’t work in those minibuses. They aren’t there. Physically.” This is how Russian president Vladimir Putin reacted to a statement by Mikhail Fedotov, chairman of the Presidential Council for Civil Society and Human Rights, that defendants in the “Network” case claim they were

Viktor Filinkov in court in St Petersburg on 11 December, when he was remanded in custody until 22 January. Photo: rupression

subjected to electric shock torture in state security service minibuses. But Putin admitted that what Fedotov had said was “really disturbing” and “that it’s absolutely impermissible”, and promised to “look into it”.

Let’s note straight away: only St Petersburg victims of the “Network” case — Viktor Filinkov; Ilya Kapustin, who was questioned about the case as a witness; and Arman Sagynbaev, who was transferred from St Petersburg to Penza after Read the rest of this entry »


Russian anti-fascists: appeal for cash

December 13, 2018

Supporters of 11 anti-fascists and anarchists facing terrorism charges in Russia have launched an appeal for cash. You can give here, via Firefund.

The money will go towards legal expenses, relatives’ travel to visit the 11, who are in detention awaiting trial, and other similar expenses. Please put a little something out of your midwinter holidays budget into this fund now!

The 11 are being detained in connection with the “network case”, which has been fabricated by the Russian security services against the activists. They have been brutally tortured in detention with electric shocks and other illegal treatment.

■ On Tuesday, a Petersburg court once again extended pre-trial detention for Viktor Filinkov, one of the 11. He will soon have been in jail for a year.

Another of the 11, Yuly Boyarshinov, last month published a graphic description of the conditions in pre-trial detention, reminiscent of a medieval dungeon. On Saturday 19 January, supporters of the 11 in the UK are organising a solidarity demonstration with the Russian anti-fascists. That will be the tenth anniversary of the assassination in Moscow of prominent anti-fascist campaigners Stanislav Markelov and Anastasia Baburova.

Viktor Filinkov arriving at a court hearing. Photo: rupression

Yuly Boyarshinov. Photo: rupression

For more information on the Network case, see:

https://rupression.com/en/

https://therussianreader.com/

https://www.opendemocracy.net/od-russia


Russian anti-fascists under attack: solidarity demo in London

December 4, 2018

All are welcome to a solidarity demonstration with Russian anti-fascists, on Saturday 19 January, at 2.0 pm at the Cable Street mural (236 Cable Street, London E1 0BL).

The action is supported by London Anti Fascists, the Anarchist Communist Group, Feminist Fightback and Plan C London. Other organisations are welcome to add their support.

The demonstration is drawing attention to the “Network Case”, in which the Russian security services have detained and tortured anti-fascist activists.

On 29 November, two of the detainees, Dmitry Pchelintsev and Andrei Chernov, went on hunger strike, claiming that during the review of their

Cartoon by Alexei Komarov, Novaya Gazeta

criminal case file they were intimidated by prison officers and staff of the FSB (federal security services). Full report here.

The Parents Network, a support group set up by the parents of the defendants, said in a statement: “If our children have violated the law, they will answer to society to the full extent of the law. In the present circumstances, however, they are unable to answer to society. They answer to Read the rest of this entry »