Add your voice in defence of Oleg Orlov!
Please sign and circulate the following petition in support of Oleg Orlov, Head of the Memorial Human Rights Centre.
The end is in sight of the court case against Oleg Orlov whom the Leader of Chechnya, Ramzan Kadyrov accuses of defamation. The sentence could be handed down any day. And yes, a sentence since the case is not civil, but criminal. Orlov could face 3 years imprisonment.
Ramzan Kadyrov was declared the aggrieved party since Oleg Orlov said that he bore political liability for the abduction and murder in Chechnya of human rights activist Natalya Estemirova.
Kadyrov likes to bask in the image of himself as builder of the republic while refusing to answer for the terror and crimes committed everyday in the region under his charge.
In trying to escape responsibility for uncontrolled lawlessness, Ramzan Kadyrov is trying to silence those who criticize his activities and attempt to help the victims of his regime.
Unfortunately Oleg Orlov is not the first in this list and it is likely he won’t be the last. We have no doubt that the moment of justice will arrive for Ramzan Kadyrov as well, but we don’t want the road to justice to be marred by tragedies and the crushed lives of innocent people.
We are convinced that the only possible just sentence in Oleg Orlov’s case would be his full acquittal.
We ask all those who care about freedom, democracy and human rights to join our appeal.
The petition has been signed by a number of prominent human rights activists in Russia.
Information about the criminal proceedings against Orlov can be found at http://www.khpg.org/en/index.php?id=1278445375 and at the links below.
Natalya Estemirova was murdered on 15 July 2009. Her murderers have not been found and punished. Instead one of her colleagues and friends is on trial.
A week after the abduction and murder Vaclav Havel, Desmond Tutu, Marek Edelman, Adam Michnik and many others ended an appeal entitled “We want justice for Natasha” with the words:
“On 6 October 2008, on the eve of the anniversary of Anna’s murder, Natasha presented the Anna Politkovskaya award to the courageous young parliamentarian from Afghanistan, Malalai Joya, with the words: "Malalai, be brave." We owe it to the memory of Natasha and Anna to protect the very few who still speak out on behalf of those to whom nobody wants to listen.”
We do indeed – please sign the petition - Just send your name, profession (optional) and country to
(add: In support of Oleg Orlov / в защиту Олега Орлова in the subject box)