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Author: Anna Efimova

The mission of journalists is to reveal the truth

An interview with Mykola Semena, a Ukrainian journalist originally from Crimea. Interviewer: Anna Efimova

ANNA EFIMOVA: You are a passionate advocate for the Crimean Tatars, the indigenous Crimean ethnic minority who were deported to Central Asia and Russia in 1944 for collaboration with the Nazis. You witnessed their resettlement to Crimea during perestroika. What was your role as a journalist at that time?

MYKOLA SEMENA: At that time, I was editing and writing for a Simferopol newspaper. At the peak of Crimean Tatar resettlement in Crimea, the situation was so complex. Crimean Tatars are closely linked to the history of the peninsula. Their agriculture and folk crafts laid the foundation of the Crimean economy, they had a developed material and intangible culture. However, till the end of the 1980s, their history was suppressed by Soviet propaganda.

July 14, 2022 - Anna Efimova Mykola Semena

Bearing witness. Despite repressions and state propaganda, the anti-war movement in Russia continues

As the war in Ukraine continues, questions have been asked as to the internal situation in Russia. Whilst the country’s burgeoning anti-war movement may not live up to outside expectations, its attempts to work around the Kremlin’s restrictions are inspiring new and unique forms of protest.

International critics often view the Russian domestic anti-war movement as helpless and doomed to fail. This might seem true as it does not comply with the West and Ukraine’s main expectation that it will start large-scale street protests capable of overthrowing Vladimir Putin’s regime. What often escapes the world’s attention is that there are no such opportunities for the Russian anti-war movement in the country’s political structure. It must first evolve in more sophisticated, symbolic ways to reach a point of numerical strength over time.

April 25, 2022 - Anna Efimova

Fear as essential

A review of the film Dear Comrades! directed by Andrei Konchalovsky, Russia, 2020.

June 22, 2021 - Anna Efimova

The shame of Dagestan

Women’s rights is probably the most controversial topic in Dagestan, Russian’s North Caucasus republic. Svetlana Anokhina, a women’s rights activist and journalist, who had fled the republic after receiving a death threat, now carries on with her work from far away.

In July 2020 Svetlana Anokhnina a women’s rights activist and journalist based in Dagestan, received a telephone death threat as part of a wider “sorting out the feminists” campaign taking place in the republic. This was not the first threat issued to Svetlana but, unlike before, this time the caller tried to reach her by phone several times, making sure she received his message. And he took no effort to hide his own identification. Svetlana tracked the cell phone number and established the name of its owner. She passed this information to the police. After the investigation had been completed, Svetlana hoped that justice would be fast. Yet, soon after the detective set a meeting with the caller, the local police abruptly stopped providing updates on her case.

February 3, 2021 - Anna Efimova

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