Human Rights Issues in Eurasia / Правовые Вопросы В Регионах Евразии

Provocation From Russian Security Services – Treats, Harassment

Posted by Info on 02/12/2010

30.1.2009 – from Moscow Embassy to Washington
The FSB letter attempted to justify its position by highlighting the complexity of nationalities and religions in
the North Caucasus, the prevalence of extremist movements, and the predominant role played by family loyalties as
factors that made funding of NGOs in the region dangerous. The FSB made implicit threats that information about US funding of illegal groups would likely be made public through the media, damaging US-Russian counterterrorism efforts. Further, the letter noted that “incompetent actions” on the part of the “Embassy sections, like USAID” could escalate tensions in regions beyond the borders of the North Caucasus to the detriment of US and Russian interests. When the Ambassador protested this FSB salvo, Deputy Foreign Minister Ryabkov claimed (credibly) that the security service complaints had not been coordinated with the MFA.

In mid-January, the Moscow branch of the MVD issued a letter to the Higher School of Economics, raising the issue
of four students (possibly six) who participated in December opposition marches with the veiled recommendation that they
be expelled. According to press reports, the letter warned “implementation of un-sanctioned mass acts was one of the forms of extremist activity, carrying a high level of societal danger..

Getting Ugly and Personal with NDI
On January 29, USAID FSNs received an email from XX with a photoshopped image of XX reclining with an underage child. The picture was attached to a message, ostensibly from a Russian citizen, which accused XX of raping her 9-year old daughter. This latest provocation falls on the heels of a scandal in Murmansk alleging NDI interference in local elections and harassment of NDI staff XX. The Ambassador met with representatives from NDI on January 30 on harassment of the NGO, reported septel. more HERE


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