8. Februar 2005

Pressure on russian scientists - Additional information

To: whom it may concern
Topic: Pressure to Russian scientists
February 8, 2005
Sosnovy Bor, Moscow, St. Petersburg, Russia

Open message from Russian NGOs,

Dears Ladies and Gentlemen,

We have written about our disturbances because of contacts of the Green Europarliament with director of Sociological Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences A. V. Tikhonov in our previous letters.
He was invited by the Greens in Europarliament to Brussels to discuss the project "Investigating
Transboundary Pollutant Transportation in Baltic States: an Example of Integrated Assessment of the Environment and Predicting Possible Consequences of Extraordinary Natural and Man caused Situation in the North-West Region (Pskov, Novgorod, Leningrad, Kaliningrad) Russia and the Frontier Countries".
These were not “insinuations against the project and against the Mr. Tikhonov” which “might be more based on internal intrigues and academic and environmental micro cosmos in St. Petersburg than on other things”, as Mr. Frank Schwalba-Hoth writes in his return letter on February 4, 2005.
We only apply to our Western European colleagues to pay attention at dangerous political changes that happen in Russia and remind us events in Germany in the beginning of 1930s.

A wave of spy-mania has grown in Russia lately. A number of cases grow when scholars are
accused groundlessly of spying, disclosure of state secrets or illegal export of processing technologies.
More then 30 Russian NGOs made a special statement concerning such cases in January 2005.
And The Public Committee on Protection of Scholars was founded in Moscow.

Unfortunately, heads of some research institutions either are indifferent to persecution of their
workers by the Federal Security Service (FSB) or actively cooperate with FSB. In some cases
such positions of the heads helped FSB to fabricate cases when scholars were prosecuted and
got large terms of jail (cases of I. Sutiagin and V. Danilov who are imprisoned for 14 and 15 years correspondingly). On the one hand, such heads support secret services staying in Russia, and,
on the other hand, they speak about their adherence to democratic ideals when visiting Western countries and try to find their niches in international programs and projects.

Sending information on A. V. Tikhonov to the Greens in Europarliament, we only intended to pay attention of the deputies at an existence of such a problem and a necessity to be more careful choosing partners for cooperation in Russia. We do not have any doubt in high qualification and personal honesty of Mr. Frank Schwalba-Hoth who singed an invitation for A. V. Tikhonov to come to Brussels (look to the separate attach file). We just point out at a shortage of information on the contemporary Russian situation among Western public. And we had a goal to fill in this information gap.


Oleg Bodrov, NGO Green World Chairman, member of International Socio-Ecological Union, Coalition Clean Baltic member, Sosnovy Bor – St. Petersburg, Russia, Phone/fax +7 81369 72991, mobile: +7 921 74 52 631,
e-mail: Bodrov@sbor.net , http://www.greenworld.org.ru/ , http://www.decomatom.org.ru/
Prof. Alexey Yablokov, President, Center for Russian Environmental Policy, Moscow, phone/fax: +7 095 9528019

Alexander Nikitin, NGO Bellona, Chairperson of the Russian office , St. Petersburg, Russia, phone/fax: +7 812 327 28 43

(a document, showing the invitation letter of Mr Schwalba-Hoth to Mr Tichonow has been attached to this message. It is available from Oleg Bodrov directly, or by request to post@infobalt.de)