Russian Supreme Court Orders Dissolution of Opposition Party Kremlin
The Ministry of Justice presented an argument that the number of affiliates of the opposition party had decreased from 47 to 40 since the beginning of the year, leaving them with less than half of their affiliates in the regions of Russia. This was seen as a valid reason for their immediate liquidation by the court.
Opposition Party PARNAS Argues against the Ruling
PARNAS, the opposition party, argues that it currently has 44 subsidiaries which makes up more than half of the federated entities. Before the war in Ukraine, there were 85, but with the Ukrainian annexation in September 2022, four new regions have been included in the Constitution, resulting in a total of 89 regions in Russia.
However, PARNAS asserts that these newly added regions cannot be taken into account, as there are still no proper executive bodies established in them yet.
The History of PARNAS
Founded in 1990 as the Republican Party of Russia, the party changed its name in 2012, as it decided to join other opposition formations critical of the Russian President Vladimir Putin. It has included prominent figures such as former Prime Minister Mikhail Kasyanov, the jailed Ilya Yashin, who criticizes the actions of the Russian army in Ukraine and is currently serving time in prison.
Opposition Accuses Kremlin of Suppressing Its Leaders
The extraparliamentary opposition frequently accuses the Kremlin of putting pressure on its leaders in order to silence their criticisms of Russian military intervention in Ukraine. This has resulted in several leaders being sentenced to long prison terms or being forced into exile. Despite Putin denying his intention to launch a “witch hunt,” he still ordered the Prosecutor’s Office and security forces to take measures aimed at ending the “scum” in the country.