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With over 1000 political prisoners in Russia, Putin says mass repressions must never be repeated

Source: Meduza

During a meeting of the Presidential Human Rights Council, Russian President Vladimir Putin supported a proposal to extend the state concept for memorializing political repression victims, which is set to expire at the end of 2023. Putin said that mass repressions in Russia must never be repeated:

When we talk about victims of political repression, we are referring to a variety of people. These include those who were indeed opponents of the Soviet regime and supporters who ended up behind bars for various internal political reasons… There were also completely random people. All this is important, but something else is more important for us. It’s more important for us that nothing like this happens again in our country’s history, because all of this caused immense, almost irreparable damage to our people and our state.

In recent years, Russian civil activists and opposition politicians have been actively persecuted in Russia. The most well-known Russian opposition figure, Alexey Navalny, survived a poisoning attempt and is currently serving a 19-year sentence in a penal colony. Many other opposition figures have also been arrested or have left the country. After Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine, the pressure on dissenters intensified, and even lawyers defending opposition figures have been persecuted.

Human rights group Memorial has recognized 628 people as political prisoners, including more than 400 persecuted for their religion. According to OVD-Info, 1,011 people in Russia are in prison for political reasons.

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