The oldest Russian human rights activist, a former Soviet dissident and one of the symbols of resistance in contemporary Russia, Lioudmila Alexeeva, died Saturday in Moscow at the age of 91, after a long illness.
The chairman of the Moscow Helsinki Group and active member of the Kremlin's Human Rights Advisory Council, Lioudmila Alexeeva, "died tonight" at a Moscow hospital at 16:30 GMT, said Mikhail Fedotov, president of the Council in a statement.
"It was not the first time he was in this hospital, his doctors have saved many times in the most difficult situations, but there are situations where doctors can not do anything," he said.
"To say that we will miss it is to say nothing." This is a great loss for the entire human rights movement in Russia, "said Fedotov.
"In recent times he was already struggling with his illness, but his mind was always stronger than his body and much stronger than any disease," he added.
"For all those who appreciate, appreciate and appreciate democracy, Liudmila Mikhailovna (Alexeeva) has always been and will remain a symbol of honesty and uncompromising struggle for man," said the human rights delegate in Russia, Tatiana Moskalkova, quoted by the Interfax news agency.
Lioudmila Alexeeva was also one of the symbols of resistance in the USSR and then in Russia.
In 1976, he became one of the founders of the Helsinki Group in Moscow, whose members will be arrested over the years and strongly condemned or forced into exile.
In exile, he continued to defend Soviet opponents and wrote an authoritative story of dissent to date. She did not return to Moscow until 1993, after the fall of the USSR.
– "absolute authority" –
In recent years, Alexeeva has been in all battles, both to tell the truth about the suspected death in the jail of the jurist Sergei Magnitsky, and to denounce the trial of the former oligarch and Kremlin critic Mikhail Khodorkovsky, saying that "in In this case, everything is done not according to the law, but according to the directives that come from the top ".
In 2009, he received the Sakharov Prize in Strasbourg, along with officials from the Russian NGO for Human Rights Memorial, a distinction that the European Parliament assigns to the defenders of freedom of thought throughout the world.
"If you save at least one person, it's already such a joy," he said in one of the Russian media interviews.
In 2017, the year in which he celebrated his 90th birthday, Lioudmila Alexeeva received a state award for President Vladimir Putin's "outstanding achievements in the field of human rights".
"We may not be in agreement with Liudmila Mikhailovna, we can discuss something with her, and I do it sometimes, but this does not stop to treat her with enormous respect for her courage and her civil position", then Putin said .
Lioudmila Alexeeva was "an absolute authority for all Russian human rights defenders, a leader who brought them all together", Ella Pamfilova, president of the Russian Central Election Commission and former human rights in Russia.