The need for justice for grave human rights violations in Russia

Personal experiences of lawlessness and impunity in Russia have inspired authors Nikolay Bobrinsky and Stanislav Dmitrievsky to write a report outlining how we can ensure justice and punishment for grave human rights violations permitted by the Russian authorities.

The NHC has in collaboration with NUPI launched an English version of the report “Between Revenge and Oblivion: A Transitional Justice Concept for Russia”. NUPI has assisted with translation, peer review, facilitation and publication of the English-language version. The report is now available digitally.  

The work with the report started back in 2015 and was inspired by three personal experiences of lawlessness and impunity. The experiences range from atrocities witnessed during the Second Russo-Chechen War to large-scale electoral fraud in the 2011 parliamentary elections and subsequent show trials. The atrocities were covered up, and the perpetrators were not prosecuted. As long as the policy of impunity applies in Russia, there is very little chance of justice.  

In international law, transitional justice can provide a framework for responding to impunity. The authors have analyzed the legal obstacles to overcoming systemic impunity and propose measures to address this and to seek truth and justice for victims. The report provides an outline of an institutional structure for transitional justice, but can also be read as a thorough description of how Russia could become a place where grave human rights violations take place without consequences. 

At the launch, the UN Special Rapporteur on the situation for human rights in the Russian Federation, Mariana Katzarova, highlighted the importance of the report in showing the connection between the abuses in Chechnya then and Ukraine today. Dr. Domitilla Sagramoso has edited the report and pointed out how it covers not only the human rights aspect of the atrocities, but also how a whole apparatus of criminality within the environment, economy and public administration, especially corruption, has contributed to it all taking place.  

Read the executive summary of the report

Read the report: «Between Revenge and Oblivion: A Transitional Justice Concept for Russia»

Contact us


Lene Wetteland

Head of Documentation and Accountability HubEmail: [email protected]Phone: +47 97 69 75 53Twitter: @lenewett
Read article "Lene Wetteland"


Aleksandra Sidorenko

Senior AdviserEmail: [email protected]Phone: +47 402 941 88
Read article "Aleksandra Sidorenko"


Dag A. Fedøy

Director of CommunicationsEmail: [email protected]Phone: +47 920 54 309Twitter: @dagfedoy
Read article "Dag A. Fedøy"