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Administrative case opened against Golos regional organization for non-registration as foreign agent

May 13, 2013, 13:39 UTC+3
The Federal Financial Monitoring Service reported that Golos had received the funding worth of over four million roubles from foreign sources in December 2012
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Photo ITAR-TASS

Photo ITAR-TASS

MOSCOW, May 13 (Itar-Tass) - The Russian Justice Ministry has opened an administrative case against the Golos regional public organization for the protection of democratic rights and freedoms on Monday, head of the human rights association Agora Pavel Chikov told Itar-Tass on Monday. The lawyers of the association represent the interests of the Golos association in the court.

“This regional organization of the Golos association has developed a drat Election Code,” he confirmed.

The Justice Ministry and the Moscow Justice of the Peace Court have found the drafting of the Election Code as one of the traces of the violations of the law on non-governmental organizations - foreign agents by the Golos association. Meanwhile, lawyer Ramil Akhmetgaliyev told Itar-Tass that the association Golos does not bear any responsibility for the actions of the organizations incorporated in it, and they are not responsible for the activities of the association.

The Justice Ministry has earlier reported on Monday that an administrative case was opened against the Golos regional public organization for the protection of democratic rights and freedoms for the non-registration as a foreign agent (Article 19.34 Part 1 of the Code of Administrative Offences). The regional public organization Golos is incorporated in the Golos association of non-governmental organizations for the protection of the rights of the voters.

“The Federal Financial Monitoring Service reported that the regional public organization Golos received the funding worth of over four million roubles from foreign sources in December 2012,” the Russian Justice Ministry stated.

“At the same time the regional public organization Golos is carrying out political activities in Russia. For instance, from 2008 up to the present time the organization is implementing the project to make the Russian electoral process more transparent on the basis of debates and the promotion of the unified Election Code,” the Justice Ministry stated.

So, the Justice Ministry noted that Golos receives the foreign funding and conducts political activities in Russia, so it performs the functions of a foreign agent.

Meanwhile, “in violation of the requirements of the federal law on non-profit organizations” up to the present time the regional public organization Golos did not apply for putting it on the register of non-profit organizations, which perform the functions of the foreign agent.”

On May 14, the protocol over the administrative offence will be submitted in the court, the Justice Ministry added.

On April 25, the Justice of the Peace Court fined the association 300,000 roubles finding the traces of foreign agent in its activities. The court found that Golos violated in its work the law on non-profit organizations, which obliges the non-governmental organizations, which are engaged in the political activities and funded from abroad, to register as foreign agents. Head of the Golos association and member of the Presidential Council for Civil Society and Human Rights Lilia Shibanova was fined 100,000 roubles for violation of the law.

Golos refuses to register as a foreign agent as a matter of principle, finds its activities public, not political and denies the funding from abroad. Shibanova earlier stated to Itar-Tass that the association intends to address in the Russian Constitutional Court. “We will compulsorily address in the Constitutional Court, and the verdict of the court gives this opportunity to us. We find this law as the one violating the Constitution,” she noted.

According to the law enacted in the summer of 2012, a Russian non-governmental organization, which receives the monetary funds and other property from foreign countries, international and foreign organizations, foreign citizens and people without citizenship or their proxies and(or) from Russian legal entities, which receive the monetary funds and other property from the foresaid sources, and which is engaged in political activities in Russia in the interests of foreign sources, is a non-profit organization, which performs the functions of the foreign agent.

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