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USCIRF Condemns Russian Court’s Decision to Uphold Conviction of Religious Prisoner of Conscience Dennis Christensen

Kristina Arriaga, vice chair of the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF), today condemned the decision by a court in Oryol, Russia, to uphold the conviction and sentencing of Dennis Christensen, a Jehovah’s Witness, to six years’ imprisonment on charges of “organizing the activity of an extremist organization.”

USCIRF Condemns Russian Conviction of Danish Prisoner of Conscience Dennis Christensen

WASHINGTON, DC – Kristina Arriaga, Vice Chair of the United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF), today condemned the decision by a Russian court to convict and sentence Dennis Christensen, a Jehovah’s Witness, to six years imprisonment on charges of “organizing the activity of an extremist organization.”

 

USCIRF Statement on Tomorrow’s Hearing of Russian Prisoner of Conscience Ivan Matsitsky

United States Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRFVice Chair Kristina Arriaga today expressed concern over reports that Russian investigators introduced falsified information into the case against Ivan Matsitsky, a leader in St. Petersburg’s Scientology community who was arrested last year on charges of involvement in an “extremist conspiracy.”

Inventing Extremists: The Impact of Russian Anti-Extremism Policies on Freedom of Religion or Belief

This report examines Russian anti-extremist legislation, corresponding law enforcement practices, and their effects on freedom of religion or belief from 2011 to 2017. This research is focused on how the very regulations that ostensibly protect people and organizations in Russia from religious intolerance are instead used by authorities to sanction people and organizations for activity or speech based on their religious belief or lack thereof. 

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