AceWorldNews says according to latest Russian News Media a member of the Presidential Human Rights Council has suggested a code of behaviour and ethics for activists. The official says the move would sift out attention seekers with political ambitions, such as the members of the band Pussy Riot.
Vladimir Osechkin, who also heads the State Duma work-group for public control over prisons and the protection of inmates’ rights told reporters that he had suggested the official bodies hold a joint session in February and discuss the adoption of what he called “a rights activist ethics code.”
In an interview with the Izvestia daily Osechkin said that lately a lot of people started to ‘parasitize’ on human rights. These people use the status of rights campaigners for self-promotion and do not protect anyone’s interests but their own, he noted. Such behaviour leads to a situation where law enforcers and other agencies become prejudiced against the human rights community as a whole, and all rights campaigners face difficulties in their work.
“We should not be afraid to openly talk about problems, including the violations committed by representatives of policing agencies, but we should not politicize the process,” Osechkin told the newspaper. There must be a single choice option – people should work either in the political arena or in the area of Human Rights, he emphasized.
Andrey Yurov of the presidential council said that it would be helpful to introduce some rules, but they could only be recommendations. “The UN declaration on protection of human rights campaigners reads that any person has the right to protect his own or others’ rights. Therefore we cannot impose any bans here,” he stated.
At the same time, the head of the council, Mikhail Fedotov, harshly opposed the initiative saying that he considered both the ethics code and its discussion senseless. “Ethics cannot be born from orders or directives, from someone’s decision or initiative. Professional ethics is born from experience and develops by self-regulation,” the official stated.