Activist Dmitry Sekushin from Arkhangelsk has created the ecoprotest.ru website, where he is collecting information about persecuted eco-defenders from all over Russia. The portal briefly describes cases of attacks and criminal prosecution of journalists covering protests and activists from Bashkortostan, Kemerovo, Kurgan, etc. Sekushin told 7x7's correspondent about the project.
Dmitry Sekushin spoke in defense of Shies, where it was planned to build the largest landfill in Europe, for three years. According to him, active coverage of the protest in the media was one of the reasons why it was possible to achieve the cancellation of the construction.
"The solution of any environmental problem really depends on the participation of journalists. If no one had written about Shies, there would already be mountains of garbage there. Therefore, the convenience of obtaining information by journalists should be a priority. First, this database has been created for them, so that they can find up-to-date information about the protest and contacts of the persecuted activists. Second, the database can help human rights defenders, who will have a single source of information. This is always more convenient than searching in different places," Dmitry Sekushin said.
The website about persecuted eco-defenders has been created on the basis of the Wiki.js platform. This allows users to add information about a particular protest and the persecution of activists themselves. In order to publish materials on the platform, you need to contact the idea's author via e-mail or Telegram. Sekushin does not plan to open registration on the website, as he does not want an "influx of Internet trolls".
Dmitry Sekushin is working alone on the website’s content so far. However, he plans that in the future there will be a team of activists from different regions of Russia, who will independently fill out pages about their campaigns and criminal prosecutions. Sekushin believes that this approach will make the work on the website more convenient and efficient, since he cannot know all the details of environmental protests in Russia.
"It is extremely important to support eco-activists from other regions, because when you feel the support of your neighbors, it gives you strength, new opportunities come your way, and the exchange of experience, protest tools, and contacts begins. Someone knows the phone number of a journalist or a politician, for example. When this knowledge is combined, there is a synergistic effect. In fact, people in Russia are very divided, but they are ready to unite," Dmitry Sekushin commented to 7x7.
The man says that the website does not contain much information yet, but activists from different regions of Russia have already started offering him cooperation.
Dmitry Sekushin participated in the defense of the Shies station, where it was planned to build a landfill. In 2019, he was twice fined for 200 thousand rubles for repeated violations of the procedure for conducting a rally (Part 8 of Article 20.2 of the Administrative Code of the Russian Federation) for participating in a march and protest action in Arkhangelsk on April 7. Sekushin announced a fundraiser, thanks to which he managed to pay a total of 2 million rubles of his own fines and the fines of 60 other people.