Östgruppen för demokrati och mänskliga rättigheter

Swedish MPs will demand the release of Russian political prisoners

Pressmeddelande   •   Maj 05, 2014 16:47 CEST

On May 6, 2014 an action of solidarity with Russian political prisoners will be held in Stockholm, primarily with victims of repression under the so called "Bolotnaya case".

Several members of the Swedish parliament from different fractions will make an official visit to the Russian embassy to demand from Russian authorities the immediate release of political prisoners. At the same time near the Russian Embassy will be held solidarity picket organized by Östgruppen and Ordfront which will be attended by human rights activists and civil society organizations, Russian emigrants and Swedish politicians.


Martin Uggla, Human Rights organization Östgruppen

Hans Linde, MP from Left Party, member of committee of Riksdag for international affairs

Valter Mutt, MP from Green Party

Alexey Sakhnin, coordinator of Left Front, political immigrant by Bolotnaya case.

We invite all journalists, activists and all interested people to join our campaign to discuss what civil society and politics in Russia, Sweden and the EU can do to force the release of political prisoners.

The solidarity picket will be held outside the Russian Embassy at Gjörwellsgatan 31 in Stockholm at 15 o’clock the 6th of may. For more information, contact Maria Hamberg at Östgruppen: 076-945 65 05 or maria.hamberg@ostgruppen.se

Background: Two years ago, May 6, 2012, at the Bolotnaya Square in Moscow was held a peaceful demonstration against falsification of elections, authoritarian regime and anti-social policy of Vladimir Putin, which was brutally dispersed by police. This crackdown was the signal to start a wide campaign of repression against the opposition leaders and activists. It was opened a criminal case, so called Bolotnaya case. It is obvious that it is a political case. About 30 civil society activists were arrested, hundreds were interrogated, dozens had to immigrate in Europe in searching of political asylum.

To this moment the most past of prisoners involved in the Bolotnaya case have already received the long prison terms (up to 4.5 years) or were sentenced to compulsory psychiatric treatment. For the rest of them trial is going on now. Some of the defendants in the case were recognized “prisoners of conscience” by the international human rights organizations (Amnesty Int., Human Rights Watch etc.).

Sweden was the first European Union country where Bolotnaya case was discussed at national parliamentary level. In this country the campaign of support of political prisoners attracted many politicians, journalists and cultural figures.

Östgruppen är en ideell organisation som verkar för demokrati och mänskliga rättigheter i Östeuropa. Vi samarbetar med och stödjer organisationer i regionen. Vi sprider information och bildar opinion i Sverige.