#Human Rights
Un, Ban ki-Moon, Navi Pillay, European Parliament, Russian Foreign Ministry, European Union, HRW

August 23, 2013-- A judge for the Moscow District Court, Tver District, has sentenced Russian civil activist Vera Lavreshina, a member of the opposition group Solidarity, to house arrest. She is to remain under house arrest until September 16. In imposing this sentence the judge rejected the conclusion of City investigator Valery Gorbunov who raised concerns about the state of Ms. Lavreshina's health.

Vera Lavreshina was detained in Tver on August 16 during a protest march in support of political prisoner Sergei Cherepovsky. Also detained were Oleg Prudnikov, Vladimir Michuryn, Gennady Stroganov and Ildar Dading.

Ms. Lavreshina was accused of assaulting a police officer as the demonstration was being broken up. She along with the others is charged with Article 318, section 1, or "use of non-harmful force on a representative of law enforecement."

According to Ms. Lavreshina: " I rushed to Oleg Prudnikov when the so-called "victim" stomped on Oleg's neck and head with his foot and twisted his arms. I could not stand by calmly when my friends, who OFFERED NO RESISTANCE, were dragged with their faces scraping along the asphalt and their tormentors danced on their heads. It is a crime - anyone would have responded to it. It's a normal reaction for any human, in whom even a speck of conscience remains!

"This is crazy. I do not see any 'victim' here, I do not believe that I could have inflicted any damage on that police officer, he is three more fit than me, I have little fists, and yet is me who is kept in a cage like a dangerous animal!"

WHEREAS: Vera Lavreshina, as a result of her civil activism, has been repeatedly subjected to various forms of administrative repression, including an attempt to imprison her in a psychiatric facility as was done under the Soviet regime;

AND WHEREAS: The charges against Vera Lavreshina are clearly of a politically motivated character and do not relect the reality of the altercation upon which they are supposedly based, and which involved police-initiated brutality;

AND WHEREAS: Russia is a signatory to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and has also ratified a number of other international human rights instruments, including the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and the European Convention of Human Rights;

THEREFORE: We demand that the international community insist that the Russian Federation live up to its binding international human rights obligations and IMMEDIATELY release Vera Lavreshina and all other political prisoners from custody and drop all charges against them.

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The Free Russian Civil Activist Vera Lavreshina petition to Un, Ban ki-Moon, Navi Pillay, European Parliament, Russian Foreign Ministry, European Union, HRW was written by John S. Burke and is in the category Human Rights at GoPetition.