Thursday marks 40 years to the first in the history of our country human rights organizations — the Moscow Helsinki group (MHG). This event is dedicated to the big celebratory conference, which opens in Moscow and will last two days. The head of the Moscow Helsinki group Lyudmila Alekseeva told “MK” about the history of this organization and why it is so bizarre called.
photo: Mikhail Kovalev
— Everyone used to call us MHG — so in short. But originally the name was more complicated — a community group promote observance of the Helsinki agreements. These agreements were reached and signed in August 1975, the Soviet leader Brezhnev and U.S. President Carter and all European countries except Albania. In Helsinki were the most successful negotiations between warring until then, the socialist and the capitalist camps. The idea behind these agreements was that enough to exhaust itself in the arms race; both camps agreed on discharge, mutual control over nuclear weapons and cooperation in economic and scientific fields. For the USSR the agreement included another very important point. Helsinki to the West has not recognized occurrence in the Union of the Baltic countries. Now the borders of the USSR were acknowledged, and guarantees given not to disturb them. But at the end of the agreement contained articles with humanitarian obligations, it is very difficult for the Country Councils. It said about the respect for private life, freedom of speech, religion, right of free travel abroad and return back. The Soviet Union could not begin to keep these items at once, because then he would become a completely different country. And our group was created specifically in order to teach the power to fulfill the humanitarian articles of the Helsinki agreement. Therefore it is called the Helsinki group.
(Here in this historical trap we drove the Soviet government of Leonid Brezhnev: the signing of historical documents, it is automatically created by the country’s human rights movement with which it was impossible to fight hard. And human rights defenders with the Soviet authorities fought hard and eventually won, – Ed.).
On Thursday we will hold a conference, which will discuss the situation with human rights today, then will host a gala dinner with the award ceremony of the winners of the Moscow Helsinki group in ten categories, – continues the story Alekseeva.
— Who will be among the recipients?
— Historical contribution — Yuri Alekseevich Ryzhov. He first came to the defense of scientists who had been unjustly accused of spying only for regular cooperation and exchange of information with foreign colleagues. And the award for “the Protection of human rights by means of culture will receive Yuliy Kim. As far as I remember in the human rights movement, he was with us and relevant songs he wrote and sang.
— You were among the founders of the Moscow Helsinki group, and who is considered to be its Creator?
— It was created by a physics Professor, academician Yuri F. Orlov. For the creation of this group, he spent seven years in the camp, he was supposed to a long link, but eventually traded it for a regular spy. Just put on a plane and sent to America. He’s alive, but he will soon be 92 years old, so to come to Moscow on the occasion he can’t, but will speak via videoconference.
— Which means there is MHG?
— We refused to foreign grants, in order not to acquire the label of “foreign agent”. But we get presidential grant and donations from the citizens of Russia.
— How do you like the new Ombudsman Tatyana Moskalkova?
— I am wary to the fact that the interior Ministry General was appointed to this position. The police in our country — not the human rights structure. But you need to watch: suddenly it will be normal by the Commissioner for human rights? Then cooperate with it. And if not… Well, we used to live without an Ombudsman — and nothing was done…Related posts: