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Olga Misik on Standing Up For Human Rights in Russia

"I don't believe in politicians. I believe in myself and the people." Teenager Olga Misik, who read the Russian constitution in front of riot police at a Moscow demonstration, spoke to Brut about fearlessly standing up for human rights.

Meet the New Symbol of Russian Resistance

Olga Misik became a symbol of Russia’s pro-democracy movement after this photo went viral. During a July 2019 protest, the 17-year-old read the Russian constitution in front of Moscow officers — specifically articles about freedom of speech/to peacefully protest. Protests erupted in Moscow after election officials banned opposition candidates from running for a city council election in September. Moscow’s 45-seat city council is controlled by pro-Kremlin Russia United party. Misik arrived with friends early in the afternoon to protest.

After being separated from one another she eventually came close to the front row of riot police. Reading and waving the constitution around is a common form of protest in Russia, as it's meant to highlight Vladimir Putin's alleged dismissal of Article 31 — the right to free assembly. “We are here so that the independent candidates, for whom we have left our signatures, would be allowed to participate in the election. They should take part and the citizens should vote. If they were allowed… Let people decide for themselves who will represent them. That is, it.”

Misik was allowed to leave following the reading. Later at a subway station she was approached by unidentified officers who detained and arrested her. Misik says she was held for 12 hours. Reports show she was held for a day and now must appear in court to contest the charge of "attending a public event which was held without filing a notice." Generally, in Russia, it’s an extremely unstable political situation. And personally I don’t support anyone specific.But I like all the opposition candidates. Misik was one of over 1,000 protesters detained during demonstrations on July 27, 2019. She was charged with taking part in an illegal protest and faces up to a $10,000 fine. Misik says despite concerns from her parents, she will continue protesting. She is studying journalism at Moscow State University.

Brut.

08/08/2019 10:11 PMupdated: 08/09/2019 3:01 PM
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20 comments

  • Brut
    08/08/2019 22:12

    Earlier this month, Olga Misik was arrested along with nearly 1,400 other demonstrators. Now, she's quickly becoming a symbol of the Russian resistance. 🇷🇺62

  • Mykhailo R.
    08/08/2019 22:13

    Too late. This barbaric country is doomed.

  • Vilmar T.
    08/08/2019 22:32

    🇧🇷🕊

  • Greg M.
    08/08/2019 22:36

    Very brave young lady

  • Connie C.
    08/08/2019 22:48

    Putin will end this quietly and quickly and these poor protesters will never be heard from again. This is so very sad. This brave young woman is a symbol to be proud of and never forget.

  • Stephen C.
    08/08/2019 23:15

    Very brave. This can happen in the USA if we keep electing thugs into office how trample on our constitution. The only thing that stands between us and a total police state is our Second Amendment, which is under attack by the Republicans and the Democrats. Do not compromise on the right to bear arms! Do not give them bumpstocks, suppressors, or anything else! Our God given right is slowly being infringed upon and conservatives (fudds/commies/neocons) seem to be at peace with it. Wake up! Our other rights are guaranteed by the Second Amendment. You'll be thrown in a Gulag without it, by the officials and police that you eagerly supported.

  • Ashutosh A.
    08/09/2019 00:58

    Why she is not in school, children minds are being poisoned

  • Dawna K.
    08/09/2019 02:33

    seems like all over the world it's young girls who are taking the lead on change...

  • Parvez P.
    08/09/2019 04:06

    why not coming, kasmir and bangla news

  • Артем Б.
    08/09/2019 06:27

    I believe, all people, who are making some kind of conclusions and judgings just have to look widely at the issue! You see only one side of the matter and your point of view is very subjective. Come to live for a while to Russia or Ukraine, have a look at the things as they are, listen to the opposite points of view. And than you will have the right to give your estimations and write those pathetic comments... IMHO

  • Nobel S.
    08/09/2019 06:55

    MAYBE YOUR COUNTRY NEEDS A TOUCH FROM THE FIRST LADY 🧐🧐🧐🧐🧐🧐🧐

  • Stephen M.
    08/09/2019 11:21

    Agree

  • Patrice D.
    08/10/2019 12:48

    and the children shall lead the nation fuck their president after he not god

  • Jorge R.
    08/10/2019 21:15

    Very brave! Greetings from Puerto Rico. We just ousted a corrupt governor .🔥🇵🇷❤️

  • Gary W.
    08/11/2019 03:33

    ❤️❤️❤️

  • John S.
    08/11/2019 18:00

    Send her ass to the gulag

  • Naynoshka C.
    7 days

    Fuck them! If we (Puerto Rico) manage to take out the Governor than why you people can't? 🤔 FUCK THE SYSTEM! NO MORE CORRUPT POLITICIANS AND POLICE OFFICERS! NO MORE PIGS!!! 🔥🔥

  • Joynel B.
    6 days

    This isn't new, people should read more of mankind's history.

  • Wendy S.
    7 hours

    Some people are very bitter that Russia helped save Syria from terrorist take over. Viva Russia! Viva Syria!

  • Migbelle D.
    6 hours

    They did this in Puerto rico also. They(government and police) would say the constitution "would not be in effect" every single day after 11Pm and Riot police would go in to violently disperse (pacifist)protesters. So one night they did a "Storytime reading night" in which they read the constitution in front of the police.