Rights group in Russia shuts down amid government crackdown

Rights group in Russia shuts down amid government crackdown


MOSCOW (AP) — A rights group in Russia announced Sunday that it was shutting down, citing fear of prosecution of its members and supporters after Russian authorities blocked its website for allegedly publishing content from an “undesirable” organization.

The Team 29 association of lawyers and journalists specializing in treason and espionage cases and freedom of information issues said Sunday that Russian authorities accused it of spreading content from a Czech non-governmental organization that had been declared “undesirable” in Russia.

The group’s website was blocked Friday, even though it rejected the accusations, and its lawyers said they believed the government’s next step could be to prosecute members and supporters.

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“In these conditions, continuation of Team 29′s activities creates direct and clear threat to the safety of a large number of people, and we can’t ignore that risk,” the group said, adding that it would take down all of its online content in order to avoid any risks and that its

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