strasbourg - The human rights commissioner of the Council of Europe Nils Muiznieks not travel to Russia. The authorities have him ' unacceptable restrictions' imposed, he announced Tuesday.
So his visit to Moscow should take up to 48 hours, so he does not have enough time to talk to all relevant parties and make calls outside the capital. It is the first time a human rights commissioner for this reason cancels a visit.
Muiznieks visit would be devoted to press freedom and the work of civil society organizations. They must as 'foreign agents' register if they receive money from abroad. The Commissioner has criticized repeatedly during his last visit in 2013. He will assess the human rights situation from a distance now in Russia and then also comment.
The Council of Europe is an intergovernmental organization that keeps an eye on the fortunes of democracy, rule of law and human rights in Europe.