Solidarity with Russian left-wing political scientist Boris Kagarlitsky

The arrest of Russian left-wing political scientist and sociologist Boris Kagarlitsky by the Russian security service is an attack on the Russian and global Left

The official reason for Boris Kagarlitsky’s arrest was “justification of terrorism”, an act which he has allegedly committed when he commented on last year’s Kerch bridge attack. However, It is clear that the real reasons behind the prosecution are his political views and activities, given that Kagarlitsky has been a long-standing opponent of Russia’s regime.

Through his online media organisation, Boris has been criticising Vladimir Putin’s domestic and foreign policies, as well as doing educational and organisational work. As a member of the Amsterdam-based Transnational Institute (TNI) and head of The Institute for Globalization Studies and Social Movements (IGSO), he was writing books and articles, and speaking on public forums.

It is not the first time Kagarlitsky is being pressured by the Russian government. In 1982, he was arrested for critically analysing the Soviet Union from a leftist point of view and during the constitutional crisis in 1993, he was detained and beaten up for protecting the parliament against president Boris Yeltsin’s self-coup. In Putin’s Russia, he was detained several times for participating in civil protests and has been designated as a ‘foreign agent’.

The day after his recent arrest in Moscow, Kagarlitsky was sent over 1,000 kilometres away to Syktyvkar, where he will be detained, awaiting trial. The trial could result in him facing up to seven years in prison.

The arrest of Kagarlitsky – a well-known leftist and acknowledged political scientist – is an obvious attack, not only on the Russian left, but also on the global left movement. It is also obvious that sending him to such a remote location was done with the intent to complicate and silence the solidarity campaign that started following his arrest. This is why it is even more important for us to show our support and demand the end of his prosecution.

The Transnational Institute has published a statement condemning his arrest. Please join people from around the world – including DiEM25’s co-founder Yanis Varoufakis – in calling for his immediate release by signing the statement of the institute.

Read Rabkor’s public statement here.


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