Washington, DC - We are deeply troubled by Russia’s formal designation of the National Endowment for Democracy (NED) as a so-called "undesirable" organization. This designation only heightens our concern that the so-called “undesirables” law will further restrict the work of civil society in Russia. This action is a further example of the Russian government’s growing crackdown on independent voices and another intentional step to isolate the Russian people from the world.
We continue to be concerned about increasing restrictions on independent media, civil society, members of minority groups, and the political opposition. Russians, like people everywhere, deserve an open marketplace of ideas, transparent and accountable governance, equal treatment under the law, and the ability to exercise their rights without fear of retribution.
We urge the Government of Russia to uphold its international obligations and commitments to respect the freedoms of expression, peaceful assembly, and association, and the rule of law.