European Union strongly condemns intensified crackdown on independent civil society in Russia

The European Union strongly condemns the decision of Russian authorities to declare the activities of EU-Russia Civil Society Forum as “undesirable,” according to a statement from the European Union External Action (EEAS) on Wednesday.

The Russian Prosecutor General’s Office on Tuesday had effectively shut down the Berlin-based organization which hosts intergovernmental conferences and civil society events.

This decision further intensifies the crackdown on independent civil society and media in Russia, taking place against the backdrop of Russia’s war of aggression against Ukraine, the EEAS said in its statement.

The European Union urges the Russian authorities to repeal the current legislation on the so-called “undesirable organizations” and “foreign agents”, which severely restricts the freedoms of association and opinion, the statement added.

“The European Union stands in solidarity with Russian citizens who are prevented from exercising their human rights. We will continue to support the important work of Russian civil society organizations, human rights defenders and independent media and journalists inside and outside Russia,” it added.

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