The Nobel Peace Prize was awarded to the Russian human rights organization "Memorial", which in the Russian Federation is recognized as a foreign agent and liquidated by the decision of the Supreme Court.
Also among the laureates are the Belarusian human rights activist Ales Bialiatski and the Ukrainian organization Center for Civil Liberties.
The human rights organization "Memorial" was founded in 1989 to study political repressions in the USSR. Later, the organization split into International Memorial, which continued to document the crimes of the Soviet authorities, and the Memorial human rights center, which also began to document the crimes of the already existing regime.
The Human Rights Center considers it its mission to promote universal respect and observance of human rights and fundamental freedoms - both in the Russian Federation and in other states. The Human Rights Center was recognized by the Russian authorities as a “foreign agent” in 2014, and the International Memorial in 2016. The lawsuit for the liquidation of the human rights center was filed by the Moscow Prosecutor's Office with the Moscow City Court, and the lawsuit for the liquidation of the "International Memorial" was sent by the Prosecutor General's Office to the Supreme Court of Russia.
It was the human rights activities of the organization that caused its liquidation by the authorities. According to the prosecution, the center "demonstrates a steady disregard for the Constitution of the Russian Federation and laws, violates the rights of citizens and the right to access information." The lists of political prisoners maintained by the organization are “aimed at creating a negative perception of the Russian judicial system,” and Memorial’s “support” of the protests is at “destabilizing” the situation in the country, the Russian prosecutor’s office believes. Also, historians were blamed for "slanderous information about the Soviet authorities."
Belarusian human rights activist, founder of the Belarusian human rights center "Spring" Ales Bialiatski, who also received the Nobel Peace Prize, is now in a Belarusian pre-trial detention center. He and his associates were arrested back in July 2021. Vesna helped collect information about those who were detained by the security forces at the protests and sent to detention centers. Human rights activists accumulated information about all those who were subjected to torture, provided assistance to detainees and those arrested.
Another Nobel laureate, the Ukrainian human rights organization Center for Civil Liberties, was founded in 2007 by human rights activist Oleksandra Matveychuk, winner of the Defender of Democracy award from the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe. The center is engaged in the promotion of democratic rights and freedoms in Ukraine and Europe, as well as the education of future human rights defenders and social activists. Human rights activists of the Center also monitor the fate of Ukrainian political prisoners in Russia, actively participated in the release of director Oleg Sentsov and his colleague Oleksandr Kolchenko.
Last year, the Nobel Peace Prize was awarded to Novaya Gazeta editor-in-chief Dmitry Muratov and American-Filipino journalist Maria Ressa "for their efforts to preserve freedom of expression, which is a sine qua non for democracy and peace."