Dear Prosecutor General,
I am indignant about the prosecution of Yana Antonova, a paediatrician and a woman human rights defender from Krasnodar.
On 22 May 2019, Yana Antonova was charged under article 284.1 of the Criminal Code for “cooperating” with an “undesirable organisation” on account of her past involvement with the Russian movement Open Russia, which brought together people interested in civic activism, including the promotion of human rights, rule of law and government accountability. The organization has never been registered and ceased its work in March 2019.
Yana Antonova has committed no crime. She is put on trial for actions such as commemorating slain political activist Boris Nemtsov and journalist Vladislav Listyev and sharing a video about the shortage of schools in her region. Yana Antonova, who is a single parent, has already lost her job as a paediatrician, and other members of her extended family have faced harassment by Russian law enforcement agencies in connection with the criminal proceedings against her.
By prosecuting Yana Antonova for her peaceful activism, the authorities are in violation of Russia’s obligations under international human rights law, including in relation to the rights to freedom of expression and association, and the right to a fair trial.
I call on you to take all necessary steps to ensure that the criminal prosecution of Yana Antonova stops, and that she is not persecuted for her activism.