Russland hinter Gittern e.V.

The charitable foundation “Russia Behind Bars” was founded by journalist Olga Romanova in Moscow in 2008 to help prisoners and their families. In Russia, the foundation is branded as a “foreign agent”. But in Germany in 2022, “Russia Behind Bars” received an honorary award – the Theodor Heuss Foundation medal (Stuttgart) – for its contribution to the development of democracy. In the same year, the non-profit organization “Russland hinter Gittern e.V.” was established in Berlin as a successor to the cause of “Russia Behind Bars” in Europe, i.a. to support anti-war activists who are being persecuted in Russia because of their stance and activities. Since April 2023, “Russland hinter Gittern e.V.” has been officially registered in Germany.

“Russland hinter Gittern e.V.” uses the coat of arms of the Moscow foundation, created in 1998 by the artist Alexey Merinov. In Russia, this coat of arms is banned, as the Ministry of Justice found signs of misrepresentation of the state coat of arms of the Russian Federation in it.

Olga Romanova is an inspirer, one of the founders and an honorary member of the Berlin organization. The head of “Russland hinter Gittern e.V.” is Yury Borovskikh, a sociologist and a graduate of the “Public Defender School”, an educational project of “Russia Behind Bars”.

Yury Borovskikh in criminal court Moabit

The primary mission of “Russland hinter Gittern e.V.” is to study the penitentiary system of Europe and create a project of prison reform in Russia. Besides, the organization opposes political repressions and conducts cultural and educational projects dedicated to the problems of Russian prisons.

“Russland hinter Gittern e.V.” is a member of the Platform of anti-war initiatives and anti-war human rights coalition and condemns the military aggression of Putin’s Russia against Ukraine. 

Russland hinter Gittern in the German Bundestag at the meeting with Mrs. Katrin Budde, Chairwoman of the Committee for Culture and Media


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