Andrey Rylkov Foundation
for Health and Social Justice

Help saving Andrey Rylkov Foundation from the suffocating fine

Dear friends and colleagues,

On 25th of October 2018 the Zyuzinsky District Court in Moscow has fined the Andrey Rylkov Foundation for Health and Social Justice (ARF) in the amount of 800 000 RUB (which is an equivalent of 12 000 USD) for committing an administrative violation in accordance with Part. 1 Article. 6.13 of the Administrative Code of the Russian Federation – “propaganda of narcotic drugs, psychotropic substances or their precursors”.

The reason for the initiation of the lawsuit against ARF was an article on how to reduce harm from using such narcotic drugs as “bath salts” (synthetic cathinones) being published in the specialized magazine which is distributed by ARF among people who use drugs on the streets of Moscow within its outreach work aimed on the prevention of HIV and other negative consequences of drug use.

The case of an administrative violation for promotion of narcotic drugs was initiated against ARF in July this year by the Moscow Drug Control Department of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of RF. In August, the experts of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the Russian Federation carried out a linguistic examination of the text of the article and decided that the article disseminates information about the methods of illegal use of drugs, provides “threat of drug safety of Russian citizens” and therefore can not be publicly accessible. After that, in September, the case of an administrative violation was submitted to the court.

ARF did not agree with the charges and requested to dismiss a lawsuit, referring to the lack of intent to promote drugs, as well as unacceptable evidence being used within the lawsuit, but the request was denied by the court. ARF is going to appeal against the court decision.

At the same time ARF has started a fundraising campaign in order to collect the necessary amount to pay the fine. We would appreciate any financial support.

You could support us by donating through the Global Giving crowdfunding platform which you could access by following this link:

Thank you in advance for your support. We also would really appreciate if you could be able to share this information with your relevant colleagues and partners.

Andrey Rylkov Foundation for Health and Social Justice (ARF) is a grass-roots organization from Moscow, Russia, established in 2009 with the mission to promote and develop humane drug policy based on tolerance, protection of health, dignity and human rights. The Foundation engages in 4 key strategies to advance its mission: advocacy, watchdog, service provision and capacity building of affected communities and individuals.

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