HRW: Investigate Threats to Civic Group

Mounting Neo-Nazi Calls for Violence and Intimidation Against Research Center SOVA

Russian law-enforcement authorities should ensure that neo-Nazi groups stop their threats against a leading Russian NGO and hold the perpetrators accountable, Human Rights Watch said today.

At about 9:30 p.m. on February 21, 2009, a group of neo-Nazis made a threatening visit to the apartment of Alexander Verkhovsky, director of SOVA Center, an independent research center that monitors ultranationalism and extremism in Russia.

At least two of the men fraudulently gained access to the building and stood at Verkhovsky’s door, knocking and ringing and trying to lure him out. They dispersed before the police arrived. It was the second time in the past month that they had appeared at his door, and the latest in a series of threats by ultranationalists against the organization.

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