Russian anti-corruption journalist detained in Moscow

Russian journalist Ivan Golunov is seen in Moscow, Russia, on this October 27, 2018 photo. (Reuters)
Updated 08 June 2019

Russian anti-corruption journalist detained in Moscow

  • Dozens of Russian journalists protested against Golunov’s detention outside Moscow police headquarters on Friday. Police detained at least 10 of them before later letting them go

MOSCOW: A Russian journalist known for investigating corruption among Moscow city officials has been detained by police and accused of drug offenses, police said on Friday, but his lawyer, his employer and colleagues said he had been framed.
The journalist, 36-year-old Ivan Golunov, was detained in central Moscow on Thursday on his way to a meeting with a source when illegal drugs were found in his rucksack, according to police and his employer, the online news portal Meduza.
In a statement, Moscow police said a search of Golunov’s apartment had produced more drugs and some scales, and that they had opened a criminal investigation. If found guilty of large-scale drug selling, he could be jailed for 10 to 20 years.
Dmitry Djulai, Golunov’s lawyer, told Reuters he believed police had planted the drugs on his client to frame him. He said Golunov had been beaten, and that police had refused to take swabs from his hands or the rucksack or to take fingernail samples to see if he had been in contact with drugs.
Djulai said the police had also refused to call medics to catalogue the injuries that police had inflicted. Moscow police said the allegations that Golunov had been beaten as he was arrested “do not correspond to reality.”
Golunov is well known in Russia for his investigations into graft in the capital. Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin is a close ally of President Vladimir Putin.
Sobyanin on Friday ordered the head of Moscow’s police force to take the investigation under his personal control and to ensure the matter was dealt with objectively, Russian news agencies reported.
The editorial management of Meduza, which is based in Latvia, said in a statement that Golunov had received threats in recent months in connection with a story he was working on.
“We are convinced that Ivan Golunov is innocent,” the statement read. “Moreover, we have grounds to believe that Golunov is being persecuted because of his journalistic activity.”
Dozens of Russian journalists protested against Golunov’s detention outside Moscow police headquarters on Friday. Police detained at least 10 of them before later letting them go.
A Reuters witness said a long line of journalists was nonetheless waiting to take turns to stage one-person protests, the only form of legal protest in Russia which does not require prior permission from the authorities.


UAE launches global tolerance initiative for youth

Updated 14 November 2019

UAE launches global tolerance initiative for youth

  • The initiative aims to create “tolerance rings” in the digital space
  • The minister unveiled a commemorative stamp issued by Emirates Post

DUBAI: A new online initiative that seeks to encourage tolerance through dialogue among youth in the UAE, the region and around the world was announced during the second day of the World Tolerance Summit in Dubai on Thursday.
The Tolerance without Borders initiative was announced by Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al-Nahyan, the UAE’s minister of tolerance, during his keynote speech.
The initiative aims to create “tolerance rings” in the digital space, giving youth a platform for peaceful dialogue that extends beyond religious, cultural, linguistic and spatial barriers.
“We hope to see the youth of the UAE at the forefront of this initiative, engaging in communication that’s based on tolerance and acceptance with their peers here at home and around the world,” said Al-Nahyan, who is also chairman of the board of trustees at the International Institute for Tolerance.
He added that the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al-Nahyan was the pioneer behind the UAE’s prosperity, and had built a “space for coexistence and tolerance” that has helped the country’s peaceful development.
“We’re proud that we, a country in which all human beings live, with real love and genuine tolerance, live and work together to build a future for children without fear of intolerance, hatred or discrimination … based on color, religion, sect or race,” said the minister.
He added that positive relations and tolerance between all cultures and beliefs is a pre-requisite to eradicating poverty, discrimination and disease.
“Our presence together at this World Tolerance Summit is a strong declaration that we all have a duty and a responsibility in the constant pursuit of building successful relationships and partnerships across cultural frontiers,” he said.
The minister unveiled a commemorative stamp issued by Emirates Post in collaboration with the Supreme National Committee for the Year of Tolerance.
The summit hosted more than 70 speakers and over 3,000 participants from more than 100 countries.