Russia and Former Soviet Union Campaign - General Info
The Former Soviet Union (FSU) consists of the following states (in alphabetical order): Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Estonia, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, Lithuania, Moldova, Russia,Tajikstan, Turkmenistan, Ukraine, Uzbekistan.
Despite many changes in its recent history, many people believed that human rights in the FSU would change for the better, but, in many ways, the situation has worsened.
In places such as Azerbaijan and the North Caucasus we have learned of sudden disappearances of many different types of people, not only those connected with the human rights movement. Cases such as that of the lawyer Sergei Magnitsky and the Punk-Rock Group Pussy Riot have made world news. But there are many cases that don't have the benefit of that exposure.
Within the St Albans group we write letters to the Russian authorities asking for the release of prisoners who have been held arbitrarily or on bogus grounds. We ask the Russian authorities to contemplate their blatant disregard of human rights.
We have been lucky to see the release of some prisoners, but it is an uphill struggle and we don't know whether a particular letter tips the balance, and whether it's from Amnesty. We just know that we need to continue the fight for justice.
Debbie Maya looks after this campaign.