Alexei Gaskarov, a Russian social activist and economist, was arrested in Moscow on April 27, 2013. Having gained fame as an anti-fascist, he has over the past two years become a visible young public figure thanks to his energy, intelligence, passion, and commitment.
Gaskarov has invested a great deal of time and energy in seeing that his hometown of Zhukovsky, in the Moscow Region, develops in a way that is responsive to the needs of ordinary citizens. To this end, he has continued the work he began during the campaigns to defend the Khimki and Tsagovsky forests by fostering grassroots civic groups. In March 2013, Gaskarov was elected to the alternative People’s Council of Zhukovsky, thus receiving recognition from other residents of the town for his efforts.
Since December 2011, he has been actively engaged in the anti-Putin protest movement, appearing regularly in the media and at rallies and public discussions. In October 2012, he was elected to the Coordinating Council of the Russian opposition, where he has consistently pursued a grassroots social movement agenda.
The Russian police cannot forgive Gaskarov for his pivotal role in social movements. They have charged Gaskarov with involvement in “rioting” on May 6, 2012, at a permitted opposition march and rally on Bolotnaya Square in Moscow the day before Putin’s inauguration. Apparently, the police are hoping this high-profile case will end in a long prison sentence for Gaskarov. You can read more about the case here: http://en.gaskarov.info/post/50578219888
Please sign this petition demanding freedom for Alexei Gaskarov and the other May 6 prisoners.
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I write to you on behalf of Alexei Gaskarov and the other people who were accused and put under arrest following a peaceful opposition rally on May 6, 2012, in Moscow. Mr. Gaskarov is well known for his commitment to social causes, and I have been informed by reliable sources that he has been wrongfully charged with “rioting.” I am also convinced from what I have read in the media that the other prisoners of May 6 are also being prosecuted unlawfully.
I therefore request that you immediately release Alexei Gaskarov and the other prisoners in the case, dismiss all charges against them, and carry out a thorough investigation of the actions of the police against peaceful demonstrators on May 6, 2012, in Moscow.
Lawless investigations and arbitrary trials are shameful in any society. I protest the current political crackdown in Russia and demand freedom for Alexei Gaskarov and the other prisoners of May 6.