Russia classifies German organizations as unwanted


The Russian government has designated several German non-profit, research and activist groups as unwanted, a move widely seen as an attempt by the Kremlin to stifle criticism.

Among the most recent organizations to also be designated by the Russian Ministry of Justice is the Friedrich Ebert Foundation, a think tank affiliated with Chancellor Olaf Scholz’s center-left German Social Democratic Party.

The German Association for East European Studies was also blacklisted in Moscow on Monday, as was XZ GmbH, a group founded by Russian journalists living in exile in Germany.

The feminist organization OWEN – the Mobile Academy for Gender Democracy and Peacebuilding, was also placed on the list.

Russia classifies organizations that it claims pose a threat to national security as undesirable.

As a result, they are often forced to stop their work inside Russia or face prosecution.

Russian citizens risk criminal prosecution if they cooperate with these groups.

Shortly after the invasion of Ukraine in 2022, the Russian government banned a large number of institutions linked to German political parties and canceled the registrations of their offices in Moscow.

However, only the Heinrich Böll Foundation, which is close to the Green Party, was declared an “unwanted organization”.

The Russian Ministry of Justice’s registry currently includes nearly 150 blacklisted organizations from Germany, the United States and other countries.

In addition to NGOs criticizing the Kremlin, academic institutions are increasingly described as unwanted.

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