Russian politician Vladimir Kara-Murza launches foundation to aid Russian political prisoners and their families

Russian politician and journalist Vladimir Kara-Murza has launched 30 October Foundation, an organisation aiming to provide help to Russian political prisoners and their families, the announcement was made on Kara-Murza’s social media profiles.

The foundation will primarily provide direct payouts to families of Russian political prisoners, irrespective of their political views and religious beliefs. The first donation of €90,000 was made by Kara-Murza himself. This amount he received in 2022 as part of the Václav Havel Human Rights Prize (Council of Europe) and the Axel Springer Award for courage.

“Modern Russia already has hundreds of political prisoners — more than in the last few years of the Soviet Union. They are all imprisoned without any guilt or crimes; just because their beliefs run counter to the official government line. Their families and kids also fell victim to the state repressions because they were not just left without close family members but often without money to survive as well,” the announcement reads.

The 30 October Foundation board includes Russian and foreign public figures and human rights activists, the full list will be later published on the official website. Evgenia Kara-Murza, Vladimir’s wife, will chair the foundation.

Russia marks the Day of Remembrance of the Victims of Political Repressions on 30 October.

The Moscow City Court earlier sentenced Kara-Murza to 25 years behind bars for “high treason”, “fakes” about the Russian army, and running an “undesirable organisation”.

“For speaking out against the war in Ukraine. For a years-long fight against Putin’s dictatorship. For contributing to personal international sanctions against violators of human rights through the Magnitsky Act. Not only do I not repent any of these deeds, but I am also proud of them,” he said in his closing speech.

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