27 February 2007, Tuesday

Russia's Federal Registration Service (FRS) has registered the branch office of Russian Justice Initiative (RJI) in Moscow, Russian Justice Initiative said today. The office was entered into the registry of non-governmental organizations on 20 February 2007 after two previous rejections on technical grounds.

"We are happy that the branch office has been registered," said Ole Solvang, Executive Director of RJI. "We are now very much looking forward to resuming our normal work and concentrate our energies on implementing our project."

RJI is a non-governmental non-profit organization registered in the Netherlands that has provided legal assistance to victims of grave human rights abuse in the North Caucasus since 2001. RJI currently represents clients in more than one hundred cases before the European Court of Human Rights concerning torture, disappearances, summary executions and arbitrary detention. RJI registered its representative office in Russia for the first time in 2003.

The activities of the Moscow office of RJI have been suspended since 18 October 2006, the deadline for registering offices of foreign non-governmental organizations in Russia. All non-governmental organizations had to re-register their offices under a new law on non-governmental organizations that came into force in April 2006.

Applications for registration of the Moscow office of RJI had been rejected in November 2006 and January 2007 on technical grounds.

For more information:

Russian Government Rejects Registration of Russian Justice Initiative

Russian Government Rejects Registration of Russian Justice Initiative for Second Time

In Moscow, Russia: Ole Solvang, Executive Director, +7 495 915 0869

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