Natalia Dorozhnova near the court. Photo by Vyacheslav Yaschenko for the "Caucasian Knot"

15 December 2023, 14:20

Volgograd activist refuses to admit guilt of discrediting Russian Army

The Tsentralny District Court of Volgograd has begun considering an administrative case against Natalia Dorozhnova, an activist, who, after a rally in defence of the Constitution, is accused of discrediting the Russian Armed Forces and violations in organizing a public rally. Dorozhnova has declared her innocence.

On December 12, Galina Tikhenko, a pensioner, held a solo picket in defence of the Russian Constitution and peace. Galina Zabolotneva and Natalia Dorozhnova, activists, came to support Galina. Today, they were detained. An explanation was taken from Tikhenko, and a protocol was drawn up against Dorozhnova under the article on organizing a public event without authorities' approval.

"I didn't organize the picket and did not participate therein. I held no posters in my hands, and I didn't shout any slogans ... I gave an interview to a journalist, in which I expressed my opinion. But I said nothing discrediting the armed forces. We have democracy and freedom of speech in our country, I want to remind everyone about it," Ms Dorozhnova has stated.

The administrative articles on discrediting the Russian Army and violating the rules for holding a public rally provide for punishment in the form of fines, Sergey Ivaschenko, a lawyer, has explained. "But they can impose a more severe punishment – 10 days of arrest or community works of up to 50 hours," he explained.

The lawyer has noted that accusations of discrediting the use of Russian Armed Forces in Dorozhnova's interview "still need to be proven." "For this, a forensic linguistic examination is needed. But it may not come to this," Mr Ivaschenko has suggested.

This article was originally published on the Russian page of 24/7 Internet agency ‘Caucasian Knot’ on December 14, 2023 at 04:28 pm MSK. To access the full text of the article, click here.

Author: Vyacheslav Yaschenko Source: СK correspondent

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