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April 20, 2014 / 20 Nisan, 5774
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Posts Tagged ‘anti-semitism in russia’

Pro-Kremlin Lawmaker: Jews Destroyed Russia

Saturday, February 15th, 2014

A local politician from the party of Russian President Vladimir Putin has accused Jews of destroying Russia.

The accusation by Oleg Bolychev, a legislator from the ruling United Russia party at the regional parliament in Kaliningrad, was made in the parliament on Feb. 6, according to the Regnum news agency, which reported on it on Thursday.

During a debate, Bolychev called his detractors “Jews, mired in opposition,” adding: “You destroyed our country in 1917 and you destroyed our country in 1991.”

The Russian Jewish Congress condemned the lawmaker, saying it was indignant over the statement and calling on authorities to investigate it.

Bolychev also came under fire from colleagues within the ruling party, some of whom called for him to be expelled.

“It is incredible that a public figure can make such extremist statements,” lawmaker Alexander Khinshtein told the AFP news agency.

Bolychev has rejected accusations that his remarks were anti-Semitic and decried claims of extremism as “ravings and provocations”
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“I was not talking about Jews but about the situation in the country. I was speaking about traitors who destroyed a great state twice,” he said.

Russian Court Orders Jewish Teacher’s Early Release

Sunday, December 22nd, 2013

A Russian court ordered the early release of a Jewish teacher whose bribery trial was marred by anti-Semitic statements and whose lengthy prison sentence was criticized by Russian President Vladimir Putin.

The Tver Regional Court last week reduced Ilya Farber’s sentence from seven years to three for accepting bribes and abusing his position while working as a teacher in the village of Moshenka, the FirstNews.ru website reported. He is expected to walk free early next year.

Leading opposition figures in Russia rallied around Farber’s case, presenting it as a miscarriage of justice and pleading for his release.

The prosecution petitioned the court to reduce Farber’s sentence in September, days after Putin told a television network that the sentence was “egregious.”

Putin made the statement as the Kremlin’s human rights council was looking into the case because of irregularities in the trial and claims that it had been tainted by anti-Semitism.

Farber was arrested in 2011 and convicted that year for accepting $13,000 in bribes paid to him by a contractor who needed Farber’s signature to collect money from the government.

Farber has denied any wrongdoing and claims he was set up.

A higher court scrapped the earlier conviction in 2011 because of irregularities, including the judge’s instruction to the jury to “not to pay attention to the words of the defendant, and gave Farber a retrial. In the retrial, the higher court sentenced Farber to seven years in jail — two years shy of what the prosecution had sought during the retrial.

Witnesses said they heard the prosecutor ask the jury during the first trial: “Is it possible for a person with the last name Farber to help a village for free?” The statement was interpreted as referring to the fact that Farber is Jewish.

Russian Gay Rights Leader Condemned for Antisemitic Tweets

Wednesday, September 4th, 2013

One of Russia’s most prominent gay rights activists made anti-Semitic statements on his Twitter and Facebook accounts.

The tweets appeared last week on Nikolai Alexeyev’s account in connection with an article about him in OUT Magazine. Alexeyev re-tweeted comments calling the author of the article, Michael Lucas, a “Jewish pig” and “Israeli monkey,” and calling OUT Magazine a “Jewish slut magazine that supports Jews and their filthy faggotry propaganda.”

In response to the comments, Human Rights First, an American nongovernmental organization, canceled a conference call featuring Alexeyev, prompting him to write on Twitter: “I [was] just denied to take part in a sham conference call with U.S. journalists tomorrow. Jewish lobby in U.S. worked well. U.S.A. is a totalitarian state with no freedom of speech! I have much more freedom here in Russia!”

The tweets caused several prominent gay rights activists to distance themselves from Alexeyev, 37, who has won several awards for his activism, including from GALHA, a British group affiliated with Amnesty International. He also has filed precedent-setting lawsuits for gay rights in Russia and elsewhere in Europe.

OUT magazine is a popular gay monthly publication in the United States.

Gay rights in Russia have attracted international attention in recent weeks after the Russian parliament passed a law in June prohibiting the dissemination of “propaganda of nontraditional sexual relations to minors.”

Russian Human Rights Council to Review Jewish Teacher’s Graft Sentence

Friday, August 9th, 2013

The Kremlin’s human rights council is reviewing a prison sentence meted out to Ilya Farber, a Jewish schoolteacher convicted of corruption.

The regional court of Ostashkov, north of Moscow, sentenced Farber last week to seven years in jail after convicting him of receiving $13,000 in bribes from a construction company. The company was seeking permission to renovate a culture club in a village where Farber settled in 2010 and began teaching art to children.

Many in Russia believe Farber did not receive a fair trial, partly because of his Jewish origins, according to Matvey Chlenov, the deputy executive director of the Russian Jewish Congress. Several people have testified that they heard the prosecutor in Farber’s first trial telling the jury: “Is it possible for a person with the last name Farber to help a village for free?” – a statement interpreted as referring to the fact that Farber is Jewish.

The Russian Jewish Congress has collected $30,000 in donations to help support Farber’s three young sons as he prepares to appeal the sentence, Chlenov said.

Alexander Brod, head of the Kremlin’s Human Rights Council, told the news site Utro.ru that he initiated a review of the case because he found the sentence to be “too harsh.”

Farber was arrested in 2011 and convicted. But a higher court scrapped the first conviction because of irregularities, including the judge’s instruction to the jury to “not to pay attention to the words of the defendant.” The conviction last week came in a retrial.

Farber was convicted of taking two bribes of $9,100 and $4,000 from the construction company Gosstroi-1 in exchange for permission to renovate a village club. Prosecutors said he signed off on the completed renovations when in fact none had been made.

Farber was a director at the club.

Chlenov said, “It is obvious Farber acted naively and some locals set him up and dropped their corruption on him.”

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/news/breaking-news/russian-human-rights-council-to-review-jewish-teachers-graft-sentence/2013/08/09/

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