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Russia adds Dissernet anti-plagiarism project co-founder and Novaya Gazeta journalist Andrei Zayakin to terrorist list

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Russia’s Federal Financial Monitoring Service (Rosfinmonitoring), has added Dissernet co-founder and head of Novaya Gazeta. Europe’s investigative team Andrei Zayakin to its list of terrorists.

A screenshot from the Rosfinmonitoring website with Zayakin on the "terrorist" list
A screenshot from the Rosfinmonitoring website with Zayakin on the "terrorist" list

On October 30, Zayakin was put on Russia’s wanted list. He is accused of financing an extremist organization, as he transferred one thousand roubles (a little over $16) to Alexei Navalny’s Anti-Corruption Foundation. The court “restricted” Zayakin’s actions for the duration of the investigation – a term typically referring to effective house arrest. Zayakin, however, is currently not in Russia and doesn’t plan on returning to the country. In a conversation with The Insider, Zayakin noted that the new “status” will not affect his life in any way.

“I think it happened in connection with the imputed donation of 1,000 rubles to an international non-profit organization founded by [Alexei] Navalny's associates abroad. I thought it would happen earlier, but it happened now. It doesn't bring any practical changes for me, since my accounts have already been blocked since the beginning of September, as part of the investigation of that particular case about the 1,000 rubles.

Well, it's certainly amusing that none of the people who professionally propagate hate on Russian television on a large scale are on this list. I don't think we need to look for any logic in these decisions here. Or look for specific people who for some reason are unhappy with my activities.
Already this will not affect my life in any way, because, as I said, my accounts in Russia are blocked. I’ve been out of Russia for quite a long time and I won't be able to come there for a long time. In itself this decision is not very important or significant. My plans have not changed, I keep working for Novaya Gazeta and will continue to work on Dissernet.”

Dissernet, a project founded in 2013, is a community of Russian and foreign scientists, journalists, activists and volunteers. The project’s goals are to examine Russian dissertations for plagiarism. Dissernet has repeatedly exposed “scientific” papers written by major Russian officials – plagiarism violations were found in the articles of St. Petersburg Governor Alexander Beglov, former Culture Minister Vladimir Medinsky, and Interior Minister Vladimir Kolokoltsev, among others.

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