The Project on Transitional Democracies Releases Open Letter to G7 Heads of State on Democracy in Russia

Jul 11, 2006, 01:00 ET from The Project on Transitional Democracies

    WASHINGTON, July 11 /PRNewswire/ -- The Project on Transitional
 Democracies released an open letter to the G7 nations in advance of the G8
 Summit in St. Petersburg, Russia this coming weekend. The letter, signed by
 one hundred policy-makers, opinion-leaders, intellectuals and Nobel
 Laureates from Europe and the United States stated that Russia must meet
 "standards of justice, freedom and of internationally acceptable diplomacy
 if it wishes to remain a member of the G8 and of the community of
 democratic nations" and called on the G7 leaders to "raise these issues
 directly with President Putin this weekend in St. Petersburg."
     The Open Letter was sent to Garry Kasparov, an organizer of the "Other
 Russia" summit currently taking place in Moscow, a conference of Russian
 opposition leaders and proponents of democracy in Russia. Kasparov read the
 letter to conference attendees and expressed his gratitude for the
 international support.
     Bruce Jackson, President of the Project on Transitional Democracy
 explained, "It is clear to the signatories of the Letter that Russia under
 the leadership of President Putin is moving in the wrong direction. The G7
 leaders must raise their concerns about the rise of authoritarianism and
 the loss of political freedom in Russia at the G8 Summit this weekend. It
 is equally important for our leaders to recognize that there is another
 Russia which is ably represented by the democratic leaders meeting in
 Moscow to raise their concerns about the return of repressive state power
 to Russian politics."
     The Open Letter was signed by almost 100 cultural, intellectual and
 political leaders including former Swedish Prime Minister Carl Bildt, Nobel
 Laureate David Trimble, political philosopher Andre Glucksman, and 17
 current and former Members of the European Parliament.
     Contact information:
     For additional information, pleased contact Bruce Jackson at
 1-202-468-1949 or bruce@ptdemocracy.org.
     About The Project on Transitional Democracies:
     The Project on Transitional Democracies is a non-partisan, non-profit
 foundation based in Washington, DC and dedicated to the acceleration of
 democratic reform and economic development in the new democracies of Europe
 and Eurasia. Visit the Web site for more information:
 http://www.projecttransitionaldemocracy.org/.
     The following is the open letter that was directed to leaders of the G7
 nations and released by organizers of the "Other Russia" summit:
                        An Open Letter to the G7 Leaders
                               "The Other Russia"
     We wish to express our gratitude to the courageous men and women
 attending "The Other Russia" Summit today and tomorrow in Moscow. This
 alternative to the G8 summit has been organized by Garry Kasparov, Lyudmila
 Alekseyeva and other Russian human rights and political leaders. The
 laudable purpose of the "Other Russia" Summit is to focus the world's
 attention on the increasingly autocratic and repressive policies of the
 Russian Government.
     "The Other Russia" will bring together distinguished diplomats and
 politicians, academicians and civil society leaders from Russia, Europe and
 the United States to examine the deplorable state of human rights and the
 rule of law in Russia. Experts will document Russia's alarming number of
 political prisoners, the Kremlin's control over the media, the dangerous
 increase in government corruption, the continued violence in Chechnya and
 the return of a one-party state.
     "The Other Russia" Summit will examine these economic and political
 trends, hoping to provide the Russian people with a clearer picture of what
 the further loss of human and political rights will mean to them. The
 gathering is also meant to impress upon the G7 leaders, who will be meeting
 with Russian President Vladimir Putin this coming weekend in St.
 Petersburg, that there is another Russia -- a Russia at odds with the
 corrupt, authoritarian regime which President Putin and those around him
 appear resolved to impose.
     We urge our leaders -- Prime Minister Tony Blair, President George W.
 Bush, President Jacques Chirac, Prime Minister Stephen Harper, Prime
 Minister Junichiro Koizumi, Chancellor Angela Merkel and Prime Minister
 Romano Prodi -- not to equivocate when they meet the Russian President this
 weekend. He must be put on notice that Russia's current domestic and
 foreign policies are unacceptable to its neighbors, to the international
 community and to many of its own citizens.
     President Putin must be made to understand that fairness towards his
 political opponents and critics, the release of political prisoners and
 Russia's constructive engagement with its neighbors in Asia, the Middle
 East and Europe, are the standards by which his Government will be judged.
 Russia must meet these standards of justice, freedom and of internationally
 acceptable diplomacy if it wishes to remain a member of the G8 and of the
 community of democratic nations.
     Today, Russia is moving in the wrong direction.
     With the re-imposition of state control of the media, the
 nationalization of the YUKOS Oil Company, the abolition of elected
 governors, overt and covert meddling in the affairs of Ukraine, Georgia,
 Moldova, Lithuania and outright support for the dictatorship in Belarus,
 the new NGO law restricting the work of human rights groups and other
 non-government organizations in Russia, and the imprisonment of political
 opponents like Mikhail Khodorkovsky and Mikhail Trepashkin, the Government
 of Russia is deliberately turning back the clock.
     We appeal to the G7 leaders to raise these issues directly with
 President Putin this weekend in St. Petersburg. And we salute those who are
 in Moscow today, meeting in a hostile and dangerous environment to prove
 that a democratic Russia, "The Other Russia," does indeed exist.
     Signatories: (Institutions are listed for purposes of identification
 only.)
     Dimitar Abadjiev -- European Parliament Observer, Bulgaria
     Dr. Patrick Aeberhard -- President, Medecins du Monde
     Vo Van Ai -- President, Forum Asia Democracy
     Doron Arazi -- Historian
     Timothy Garton Ash -- Oxford University, UK
     Brian Atwood -- Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs, University of
      Minnesota, US; Former US Agency for International Development (USAID)
      administrator
     Paul Berman -- Writer, US
     Carl Bildt -- Former Prime Minister of Sweden
     Roberta Bonazzi -- Director, European Foundation for Democracy
     Elena Bonner -- Honorary Chair, The Andrei Sakharov Foundation
     Michael Bourdeaux -- Founder / President, Keston Institute, Oxford
      University, UK
     Pascal Bruckner -- Philosopher, France
     Ian J. Brzezinski -- Former Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for
      European and NATO Policy
     Hans Christoph Buch -- Writer, Germany
     Vladimir Bukovsky -- Cambridge University, UK
     Leos Carax -- Film director, France
     Patrice Chereau -- Film and theater director, France
     Daniel Cohn-Bendit -- Member, European Parliament, Germany
     Pierre Daix -- Writer, France
     Prof. Nicholas Daniloff - Northeastern University, US
     Ruth Daniloff -- Writer, US
     Fertilio Dario -- Comitatus libertates
     Franco Debennedetti -- Senator, Italy
     Martin Dewhirst -- University of Glasgow, Scotland
     Freimut Duve -- Former member of the German Bundestag; Organisation for
      Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) Representative
     Dr. Marek Edelman -- Former dissident, Leader of the Warsaw ghetto
      uprising
     Humphry Crum Ewing -- Chairman, The Standish Group
     Edourad Fillias -- President, Alternative Liberale, France
     Paolo Flores de Arcais -- Director, Micromega, France
     Carl Gershman -- President, National Endowment for Democracy
     Andre Glucksmann -- Philosopher, France
     Alex Goldfarb -- Foundation for Civil Liberties, US
     Adam Gopnik -- Writer, US
     Veronique Nahoum Grappe -- Anthropologist, France
     Andrew P. Grigorenko -- President, General Petro Grigorenko Foundation,
      Inc
     Robert Halfon -- Political Director, Conservative Friends of Israel
     Daniel Hamilton -- Johns Hopkins University, US
     Arthur Hartman -- Former US Ambassador to the Soviet Union and France
     Satu Hassi -- Member, European Parliament, Finland
     Roger Helmer -- Member, European Parliament, UK
     Mary Holland -- New York University, US
     Marie Holzmann -- President, Droits de l'homme in China, France
     Robert Hunter -- Former US ambassador to NATO
     Toomas Hendrik Ilves -- Member, European Parliament, Estonia
     Bruce P. Jackson -- President, Project on Transitional Democracies
     Kjell Olaf Jense -- President, Pen Club, Norway
     Alan Johnson -- Director, Democratya, UK
     Tunne Kelam -- Member, European Parliament, Estonia
     Bogdan Klich -- Member, European Parliament, Poland
     Bernard Kouchner -- Former UN ambassador to Kosovo; Founder, Medecins sans
      Frontieres, Medecins du Monde, France
     Irina Krasovskaya -- President, We Remember Foundation, Belarus
     Guntars Krasts -- Member, European Parliament; Former Prime Minister of
      Latvia
     William Kristol -- The Weekly Standard, US
     Girts Valdis Kristovskis -- Member, European Parliament, Former President
      of the Lithuanian Parliament
     Vytautas Landsbergis -- Member, European Parliament, Former President of
      the Lithuanian Parliament
     Bernard Henri Levy -- Philosopher, France
     Ekkehard Maass -- German-Caucasian society, Germany
     Giwi Margwelschwili -- Schriftsteller, Germany
     Cliff May -- President, Foundation for the Defense of Democracies
     Michael McFaul -- Stanford University, US
     Alan Mendoza -- Executive Director, Henry Jackson Society, UK
     Marianne Mikko -- Member, European Parliament, Estonia
     Tim Montgomerie -- Editor, ConservativeHome.com
     Martin Palous -- Permanent Czech Republic Representative to the United
      Nations; former Czech Ambassador to the US
     Carlo di Pamparato -- Children of Chechnya Action Relief Mission (CCHARM),
      UK
     Richard Pipes -- Harvard University, US
     Daniel Pipes -- Writer, US
     Daniel Pletka -- American Enterprise Institute (AEI), US
     Oksana Ragazzi -- UK
     Josep Ramoneda -- Philosopher, Center of Contemporain Culture, Spain
     Vanessa Redgrave -- Actress
     James Rogers -- Executive Secretary, Henry Jackson Society, UK
     Jacques Rupnik -- Professor of political sciences, CERI, France
     Prof. Aloyzas Sakalas -- Member, European Parliament, Lithuania
     Randy Scheunemann -- President, Committee for the Liberation of Iraq
     Gary Schmitt -- American Enterprise Institute (AEI), US
     Jorge Semprun -- Former Minister of Culture of Spain,
     Andre Senik -- Philosopher, France
     Andrew M. Sessler -- Emeritus Director of the Lawrence Berkeley National
      Laboratory
     Andrzei Seweryn -- Theater director, Comedie Fran�aise, France
     Dr. Brendan Simms -- Co-President, Henry Jackson Society, UK
     Robert Singh -- Birkbeck College, University of London, UK
     Aleksander Smolar -- Historian, France/Poland
     Bart Staes -- Member, European Parliament, Belgium
     Konrad Szymanski -- Member, European Parliament, Poland
     Andres Tarand -- Member, European Parliament, former Prime Minister of
      Estonia
     David Trimble -- 1998 Nobel Peace Laureate
     Prof. Inese Vaidere -- Member, European Parliament, Latvia
     Ari Vatanen -- Member, European Parliament, France
     Mark von Hagen -- Columbia University, US
     Stuart Wheeler -- UK
     Richard Wilson -- Harvard University, US
     Henryk Wozniakowski -- Director, ZNAK, Poland
     Tatiana Yankelevich -- Director, Sakharov Program on Human Rights, Harvard
      University, US
     Ilyos Yannakakis -- Professor, France
 
 

SOURCE The Project on Transitional Democracies
    WASHINGTON, July 11 /PRNewswire/ -- The Project on Transitional
 Democracies released an open letter to the G7 nations in advance of the G8
 Summit in St. Petersburg, Russia this coming weekend. The letter, signed by
 one hundred policy-makers, opinion-leaders, intellectuals and Nobel
 Laureates from Europe and the United States stated that Russia must meet
 "standards of justice, freedom and of internationally acceptable diplomacy
 if it wishes to remain a member of the G8 and of the community of
 democratic nations" and called on the G7 leaders to "raise these issues
 directly with President Putin this weekend in St. Petersburg."
     The Open Letter was sent to Garry Kasparov, an organizer of the "Other
 Russia" summit currently taking place in Moscow, a conference of Russian
 opposition leaders and proponents of democracy in Russia. Kasparov read the
 letter to conference attendees and expressed his gratitude for the
 international support.
     Bruce Jackson, President of the Project on Transitional Democracy
 explained, "It is clear to the signatories of the Letter that Russia under
 the leadership of President Putin is moving in the wrong direction. The G7
 leaders must raise their concerns about the rise of authoritarianism and
 the loss of political freedom in Russia at the G8 Summit this weekend. It
 is equally important for our leaders to recognize that there is another
 Russia which is ably represented by the democratic leaders meeting in
 Moscow to raise their concerns about the return of repressive state power
 to Russian politics."
     The Open Letter was signed by almost 100 cultural, intellectual and
 political leaders including former Swedish Prime Minister Carl Bildt, Nobel
 Laureate David Trimble, political philosopher Andre Glucksman, and 17
 current and former Members of the European Parliament.
     Contact information:
     For additional information, pleased contact Bruce Jackson at
 1-202-468-1949 or bruce@ptdemocracy.org.
     About The Project on Transitional Democracies:
     The Project on Transitional Democracies is a non-partisan, non-profit
 foundation based in Washington, DC and dedicated to the acceleration of
 democratic reform and economic development in the new democracies of Europe
 and Eurasia. Visit the Web site for more information:
 http://www.projecttransitionaldemocracy.org/.
     The following is the open letter that was directed to leaders of the G7
 nations and released by organizers of the "Other Russia" summit:
                        An Open Letter to the G7 Leaders
                               "The Other Russia"
     We wish to express our gratitude to the courageous men and women
 attending "The Other Russia" Summit today and tomorrow in Moscow. This
 alternative to the G8 summit has been organized by Garry Kasparov, Lyudmila
 Alekseyeva and other Russian human rights and political leaders. The
 laudable purpose of the "Other Russia" Summit is to focus the world's
 attention on the increasingly autocratic and repressive policies of the
 Russian Government.
     "The Other Russia" will bring together distinguished diplomats and
 politicians, academicians and civil society leaders from Russia, Europe and
 the United States to examine the deplorable state of human rights and the
 rule of law in Russia. Experts will document Russia's alarming number of
 political prisoners, the Kremlin's control over the media, the dangerous
 increase in government corruption, the continued violence in Chechnya and
 the return of a one-party state.
     "The Other Russia" Summit will examine these economic and political
 trends, hoping to provide the Russian people with a clearer picture of what
 the further loss of human and political rights will mean to them. The
 gathering is also meant to impress upon the G7 leaders, who will be meeting
 with Russian President Vladimir Putin this coming weekend in St.
 Petersburg, that there is another Russia -- a Russia at odds with the
 corrupt, authoritarian regime which President Putin and those around him
 appear resolved to impose.
     We urge our leaders -- Prime Minister Tony Blair, President George W.
 Bush, President Jacques Chirac, Prime Minister Stephen Harper, Prime
 Minister Junichiro Koizumi, Chancellor Angela Merkel and Prime Minister
 Romano Prodi -- not to equivocate when they meet the Russian President this
 weekend. He must be put on notice that Russia's current domestic and
 foreign policies are unacceptable to its neighbors, to the international
 community and to many of its own citizens.
     President Putin must be made to understand that fairness towards his
 political opponents and critics, the release of political prisoners and
 Russia's constructive engagement with its neighbors in Asia, the Middle
 East and Europe, are the standards by which his Government will be judged.
 Russia must meet these standards of justice, freedom and of internationally
 acceptable diplomacy if it wishes to remain a member of the G8 and of the
 community of democratic nations.
     Today, Russia is moving in the wrong direction.
     With the re-imposition of state control of the media, the
 nationalization of the YUKOS Oil Company, the abolition of elected
 governors, overt and covert meddling in the affairs of Ukraine, Georgia,
 Moldova, Lithuania and outright support for the dictatorship in Belarus,
 the new NGO law restricting the work of human rights groups and other
 non-government organizations in Russia, and the imprisonment of political
 opponents like Mikhail Khodorkovsky and Mikhail Trepashkin, the Government
 of Russia is deliberately turning back the clock.
     We appeal to the G7 leaders to raise these issues directly with
 President Putin this weekend in St. Petersburg. And we salute those who are
 in Moscow today, meeting in a hostile and dangerous environment to prove
 that a democratic Russia, "The Other Russia," does indeed exist.
     Signatories: (Institutions are listed for purposes of identification
 only.)
     Dimitar Abadjiev -- European Parliament Observer, Bulgaria
     Dr. Patrick Aeberhard -- President, Medecins du Monde
     Vo Van Ai -- President, Forum Asia Democracy
     Doron Arazi -- Historian
     Timothy Garton Ash -- Oxford University, UK
     Brian Atwood -- Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs, University of
      Minnesota, US; Former US Agency for International Development (USAID)
      administrator
     Paul Berman -- Writer, US
     Carl Bildt -- Former Prime Minister of Sweden
     Roberta Bonazzi -- Director, European Foundation for Democracy
     Elena Bonner -- Honorary Chair, The Andrei Sakharov Foundation
     Michael Bourdeaux -- Founder / President, Keston Institute, Oxford
      University, UK
     Pascal Bruckner -- Philosopher, France
     Ian J. Brzezinski -- Former Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for
      European and NATO Policy
     Hans Christoph Buch -- Writer, Germany
     Vladimir Bukovsky -- Cambridge University, UK
     Leos Carax -- Film director, France
     Patrice Chereau -- Film and theater director, France
     Daniel Cohn-Bendit -- Member, European Parliament, Germany
     Pierre Daix -- Writer, France
     Prof. Nicholas Daniloff - Northeastern University, US
     Ruth Daniloff -- Writer, US
     Fertilio Dario -- Comitatus libertates
     Franco Debennedetti -- Senator, Italy
     Martin Dewhirst -- University of Glasgow, Scotland
     Freimut Duve -- Former member of the German Bundestag; Organisation for
      Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) Representative
     Dr. Marek Edelman -- Former dissident, Leader of the Warsaw ghetto
      uprising
     Humphry Crum Ewing -- Chairman, The Standish Group
     Edourad Fillias -- President, Alternative Liberale, France
     Paolo Flores de Arcais -- Director, Micromega, France
     Carl Gershman -- President, National Endowment for Democracy
     Andre Glucksmann -- Philosopher, France
     Alex Goldfarb -- Foundation for Civil Liberties, US
     Adam Gopnik -- Writer, US
     Veronique Nahoum Grappe -- Anthropologist, France
     Andrew P. Grigorenko -- President, General Petro Grigorenko Foundation,
      Inc
     Robert Halfon -- Political Director, Conservative Friends of Israel
     Daniel Hamilton -- Johns Hopkins University, US
     Arthur Hartman -- Former US Ambassador to the Soviet Union and France
     Satu Hassi -- Member, European Parliament, Finland
     Roger Helmer -- Member, European Parliament, UK
     Mary Holland -- New York University, US
     Marie Holzmann -- President, Droits de l'homme in China, France
     Robert Hunter -- Former US ambassador to NATO
     Toomas Hendrik Ilves -- Member, European Parliament, Estonia
     Bruce P. Jackson -- President, Project on Transitional Democracies
     Kjell Olaf Jense -- President, Pen Club, Norway
     Alan Johnson -- Director, Democratya, UK
     Tunne Kelam -- Member, European Parliament, Estonia
     Bogdan Klich -- Member, European Parliament, Poland
     Bernard Kouchner -- Former UN ambassador to Kosovo; Founder, Medecins sans
      Frontieres, Medecins du Monde, France
     Irina Krasovskaya -- President, We Remember Foundation, Belarus
     Guntars Krasts -- Member, European Parliament; Former Prime Minister of
      Latvia
     William Kristol -- The Weekly Standard, US
     Girts Valdis Kristovskis -- Member, European Parliament, Former President
      of the Lithuanian Parliament
     Vytautas Landsbergis -- Member, European Parliament, Former President of
      the Lithuanian Parliament
     Bernard Henri Levy -- Philosopher, France
     Ekkehard Maass -- German-Caucasian society, Germany
     Giwi Margwelschwili -- Schriftsteller, Germany
     Cliff May -- President, Foundation for the Defense of Democracies
     Michael McFaul -- Stanford University, US
     Alan Mendoza -- Executive Director, Henry Jackson Society, UK
     Marianne Mikko -- Member, European Parliament, Estonia
     Tim Montgomerie -- Editor, ConservativeHome.com
     Martin Palous -- Permanent Czech Republic Representative to the United
      Nations; former Czech Ambassador to the US
     Carlo di Pamparato -- Children of Chechnya Action Relief Mission (CCHARM),
      UK
     Richard Pipes -- Harvard University, US
     Daniel Pipes -- Writer, US
     Daniel Pletka -- American Enterprise Institute (AEI), US
     Oksana Ragazzi -- UK
     Josep Ramoneda -- Philosopher, Center of Contemporain Culture, Spain
     Vanessa Redgrave -- Actress
     James Rogers -- Executive Secretary, Henry Jackson Society, UK
     Jacques Rupnik -- Professor of political sciences, CERI, France
     Prof. Aloyzas Sakalas -- Member, European Parliament, Lithuania
     Randy Scheunemann -- President, Committee for the Liberation of Iraq
     Gary Schmitt -- American Enterprise Institute (AEI), US
     Jorge Semprun -- Former Minister of Culture of Spain,
     Andre Senik -- Philosopher, France
     Andrew M. Sessler -- Emeritus Director of the Lawrence Berkeley National
      Laboratory
     Andrzei Seweryn -- Theater director, Comedie Fran�aise, France
     Dr. Brendan Simms -- Co-President, Henry Jackson Society, UK
     Robert Singh -- Birkbeck College, University of London, UK
     Aleksander Smolar -- Historian, France/Poland
     Bart Staes -- Member, European Parliament, Belgium
     Konrad Szymanski -- Member, European Parliament, Poland
     Andres Tarand -- Member, European Parliament, former Prime Minister of
      Estonia
     David Trimble -- 1998 Nobel Peace Laureate
     Prof. Inese Vaidere -- Member, European Parliament, Latvia
     Ari Vatanen -- Member, European Parliament, France
     Mark von Hagen -- Columbia University, US
     Stuart Wheeler -- UK
     Richard Wilson -- Harvard University, US
     Henryk Wozniakowski -- Director, ZNAK, Poland
     Tatiana Yankelevich -- Director, Sakharov Program on Human Rights, Harvard
      University, US
     Ilyos Yannakakis -- Professor, France
 
 SOURCE The Project on Transitional Democracies