Amnesty lost itself in today’s treacherous media landscape

But the school that really taught me how things work in personal relationships is a cliché school. It involves sitting on boards.

No, I’ve never been good at sitting on boards. I don’t like meetings and I hate reading minutes. I’m bad at interpreting budgets and totally irritated by people attending meetings because they can’t stick to it. (These are on all boards. The most annoying board members are those who like to go to board meetings and therefore do everything they can to not run out.)

Despite this, she has sat on a number of boards. When I turned twenty, a member of the board of directors of the Obu Academy University Political Science Club. As a parent, I ended up on the board of directors of the Finnish School in Moscow. At the moment, I am sitting on the board of directors of the Finnish School in Saint Petersburg.

If there is anything these tasks have taught me, it goes like this: If the board does something that looks bad, it doesn’t matter what the board itself thinks.

If it looks bad – it is bad.

Of course she knows A global, professional and important organization like Amnesty International. If you give an imprisoned Russian opposition leader the status of a prisoner of conscience, then there is no way in the world to deprive him of that status without it looking bad.

Alexei Navalny was granted prisoner of conscience on January 17. After one month The pardon is prohibited the same situation. This is because of his long-known nationalist past.

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We later learned that Amnesty had campaigned for a decision to grant Navalny this prestigious status. One of the texts that was sent to the organization is Katia Kazbek’s Twitter feed. Kazbek is a Russian freelance journalist and translator whose real name is Yekaterina Dubovetskaya and lives in New York. (She signs but doesn’t hide her identity.) Dubovetskaya is the daughter of wealthy Russian businessman Yuri Dubovetsky and writes columns for the Kremlin-funded propaganda channel RT. She calls herself a communist, and she sympathizes with Stalin and He criticized the demonstrations Against Lukashenko in Belarus as a neoliberal and nationalist.

Amnesty International representatives Both London and Moscow have said that the decision doesn’t really change anything. Navalny remains a political prisoner and Amnesty International is working on his release.

This thing is clear. Unfortunately, the problem still persists.

The fact that Amnesty International considers Navalny not to be a prisoner of conscience is not an issue in and of itself. It is a decision that the organization can make, based on its own criteria.

The problem is that Navalny was granted first and then denied this prestigious position.

Either Amnesty did not know exactly who Navalny was, or it was affected by the campaign against him.

Personally, I don’t think so That Amnesty has acquiesced in any way to the Kremlin. It is rather an indirect result of the fact that they apparently neglected the search and then got a big jolt when the – highly anticipated – campaign against Navalny began. An important part of today’s media landscape and the pressure methods used by authoritarian regimes are that they often operate indirectly. The resourceful RT channel attracts writers who do not support Putin – but Dubovetskaya does not support him – but who, for other reasons, are on the same side with the Kremlin. Dubovetskaya belongs to the Communist Winter Brigades, which consider the class struggle to be superior to everything else. Its ideological struggle is not the same as Putin, but it coincides.

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This is why it is disturbing for Amnesty to be concerned about this kind of criticism. When professional organizations make decisions that are likely to be criticized, they must be prepared for exactly that. As the British said early in 1939: keep calm and carry on.

Read more texts by Anna-Lena Laurén here

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