MOSCOW: Russia on Friday declared environmental group Greenpeace an “undesirable organisation”, effectively banning it from operating in the country.
In a statement, the prosecutor general said Greenpeace had tried to “interfere in the internal affairs of the state” and was “engaged in anti-Russian propaganda” by calling for sanctions against Moscow.
Born out of the anti-nuclear, counterculture movement of the late 1960s, Greenpeace is one of the largest and most recognisable environmental organisations in the world, operating in over 50 countries including Russia.
The label “undesirable” has been applied to dozens of foreign groups in Russia since it started using the classification in 2015, and effectively bans an organisation outright.
Russia previously launched criminal proceedings against Greenpeace activists in 2013 when they attempted to scale an offshore oil rig in the Arctic Ocean belonging to state energy giant Gazprom.
In that incident, Russian security services boarded the group’s Dutch-registered Arctic Sunrise boat and took its 30-strong crew into custody, where they were investigated for piracy.
Published in Dawn, May 20th, 2023
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