Repression in Russia: Persecution of Pentecostals for allegedly supporting ‘Azov’


August 15



  • A resident of Novosibirsk became involved in a criminal case on the rehabilitation of Nazism because of posts and comments on social networks.
  • In Chelyabinsk, Moscow, Krasnodar, Sochi, Kemerovo, and Novosibirsk, the police searched the homes of members of the “New Generation” Pentecostal Church. They are suspected of supporting the Azov battalion. The organization itself is recognized as undesirable in Russia.
  • A criminal case was opened against a 30-year-old prisoner of one of the colonies of the Penza region on “fakes” about the army (Part 1 of Article 207.3 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation) because of anti-war conversations with other prisoners.
  • In the Voronezh region, a case was opened on the rehabilitation of Nazism on the Internet (Part 4 of Article 354.1 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation). Two schoolgirls published photos with their arms raised at a military memorial.
  • The FSB reported on the prevention of a terrorist attack in Volgograd. During the arrest, two men were killed, allegedly preparing to blow up an oil pipeline on the instructions of the Ukrainian special services.
  • A court in Crimea arrested DJ Yuri Radionov for 10 days, who, by order of a cafe visitor, turned on the song of the Ukrainian rapper “Wild Field.”
  • The head of the Novorzhevsky district of the Pskov region and a member of the Yabloko party Sofia Pugacheva was fined 50 thousand rubles because she removed the letters Z and V from the windows of the district Cultural Center.


August 16



  • Human rights lawyer Pavel Chikov said that 85 criminal cases of military fakes are currently being investigated in Russia. 25 accused are held in custody, and 2 are detained pending trial as a preventive measure. Another 24 defendants are outside of Russia.
  • In the Rostov and Bryansk regions, Jehovah’s Witnesses were searched. Criminal cases have been initiated against 66-year-old Lyubov Galitsyna, 55-year-old Garegin Khachaturian, 35-year-old Gevorg Yeritsyan from Novocherkassk, and 44-year-old Elena Yashina from Unech. Galitsyna, Khachaturian, and Yeritsyan were sent to a pre-trial detention center for 2 months. Yashina was ordered a restriction of travel.
  • In Kerch, a criminal case was opened against Ilya Gantsevsky under an article about “fakes” about the army because of a post on Instagram. The young man was sent under house arrest.
  • The relatives of the deputy of the Novosibirsk City Council Helga Pirogova were searched in the case of “fakes.” She is outside of Russia.
  • Activist Alexey Onoshkin was detained in Nizhny Novgorod after a search and interrogation. The court sent him to a pre-trial detention center for 2 months. The case of spreading “fakes” against the activist was initiated because of posts on VK.
  • In Omsk, archaeologist Yevgeny Kruglov, accused of spreading “fakes” about the army, was placed in a psychiatric hospital for examination by a court decision.
  • ​​In Rostov-on-Don, the prosecutor requested terms from 15 to 17 years in prison for five Crimean Tatars accused of terrorist organization activities (Part 2 of Article 205.5 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation) and preparation for a violent seizure of power (Article 278 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation using Part 1 of Article 30 of the Criminal Code).


August 17



  • At least 7 journalists cooperating with Radio Svoboda were searched in Kazan.
  • Roskomnadzor allocated 57.7 million rubles for the search system for prohibited content “Oculus.” In images and videos, URLs, chat conversations, and messenger channel materials, the system will have to find “signs of extremism and terrorism,” calls for uncoordinated rallies, expressions of disrespect for the state and its official symbols, propaganda of smoking, drug manufacture and “non-traditional values.”
  • Petrozavodsk City Court fined Elena Neronova, an assistant to the deputy of the City Council from the Yabloko party, 30 thousand rubles under the article on discrediting the Russian army because of posts in VK. During the hearings, the policeman who drew up the protocol found it difficult to answer what exactly was discrediting and what was discrediting.
  • A court in Yekaterinburg arrested journalist Elena Shukaeva for 14 days because of a repost in the VK of the Navalny team’s film “He’s not Dimon to you.”


August 18



  • The prosecutor’s office has requested 2.5 years in a general regime colony for 12 Ingush ex-policemen. They are accused of non-execution of the order. On March 27, 2019, at a protest rally in Magas, 15 employees of the Ingush PPS battalion stood in a line between the Guards and the protesters to prevent clashes. They were dismissed later.
  • In the Kaluga Region, the FSB conducted searches at the homes of anti-fascists Andrei Polyakov and Artem Vostrov.


August 19



  • Novosibirsk City Council deputy Helga Pirogova, accused of spreading “fakes” about the army, was put on the international wanted list. At the end of July, she left Russia.
  • A student who urinated into the Eternal Flame was sentenced in the Kaluga Region. Kirill Yefimov, 22, was sentenced to two years in a penal colony under an article on public desecration of symbols of the military glory of Russia.
  • Roskomnadzor ordered search engines to mark TikTok, Telegram, Zoom, Pinterest, and Discord as violators of Russian legislation because the companies “do not comply with the procedure for deleting prohibited information.”
  • FSB officers warned about treason to three residents of the Moscow region who transferred money to the fund to help the Ukrainian military “Come back alive.”
  • The Moscow City Court has removed nine independent candidates for municipal deputies from the elections on administrative claims.


August 20



  • In Vladikavkaz, a court fined stand-up comedian Ariana Lolaeva 50 thousand rubles for an article about the “discrediting” of the army due to anti-war posts on Instagram and the telegram channel “Rocking Chair.”
  • In Moscow, the Election Commission of the Zyuzino district withdrew an independent candidate for municipal deputies Alexander Zamyatin from the elections because of the publication of a video of Navalny’s team on Facebook in 2020.


August 21



  • Olga Shkolina, a former activist of Navalny’s Arkhangelsk headquarters, was put on the federal wanted list in the case of “extremist organizations.” She is outside of Russia.


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