Russian court upholds Putin’s decree to classify Russian army losses
Russia’s Supreme Court upheld the President’s decree to classify troop deaths during peace time.
This is reported by the Ukrayinska Pravda (Ukrainian Truth) Ukraine’s media outlet, citing the Meduza online newspaper.
The lawsuit was lodged by several activists and journalists, who were outraged by the decision of Vladimir Putin. They are sure that the decree is aimed at preventing any information about Russia’s military role in eastern Ukraine from being made public.
Ivan Pavlov, the lawyer of the plaintiffs, argues that the military losses are not on the list of the classified information, set forth in the state secrets law. The law does not also allow classifying the information about emergencies which threaten health and safety of citizens.
The adoption of decree classifying army losses was initiated by Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, as it became known during the court hearing.
“Negative result is also result. It’s great we have publicity anyway. Justice is not the only function our court fulfils when considering the cases of national importance. We understand that we put the court in an awkward spot,” BBC Russian quotes Denis Vostrikov, one of the plaintiffs, as saying.
According to lawyer Ivan Pavlov, he and his colleagues are going to appeal to the Constitutional Court with the request to examine the state secrets law, which was taken as a basis by the President’s representatives while defending the new decree in the Supreme Court.
The Russian president’s team insists that the decree is not related to the conflict in Donbas. President’s press secretary Dmitri Peskov says that president Vladimir Putin is not going to give the order to start any military operations in the near future.
In turn, the U.S. Department of State named the Putin’s decree as the attempt to hide the Russian army losses in Donbas.