Old Saint Basil's Cathedral in MoscowJohnson's Russia List title and scenes of Saint Petersburg
Excerpts from the JRL E-Mail Community :: Founded and Edited by David Johnson
#19 - JRL 2007-173 - JRL Home
Russian psychiatrist says opposition activist put in hospital illegally

Moscow, 13 August: Having examined the United Civil Front (UCF) activist, Larisa Arap, the president of the Independent Psychiatric Association, Yuriy Savenko, made a conclusion that she had been put in a psychiatric clinic illegally.

"The story is much more complicated than 'yes' and 'no' but this very case - though it has no direct relation to politics - testifies that punitive medicine is still alive. And Larisa Arap has been put in a clinic by force, rudely, and without any grounds," Yuriy Savenko told Interfax on Monday (13 August). "This style which is typical of the Soviet times - to protect the state and not the person - is used by inertia," the psychiatrist added.

He said that now he is writing a report on the examination which he will submit to Russian Human Rights ombudsman Vladimir Lukin, who had asked him to conduct the examination, either on Monday night or on Tuesday.

Larisa Arap was forcibly admitted to a psychiatric clinic on 5 July.

Her UCF colleagues believe that this happened because of her public and political activity.

In particular, the UCF paid attention to the fact that Larisa Arap was hospitalized soon after her article "Madhouse", in which she described harsh treatment applied to children and teenagers in Murmansk Region's psychiatric clinic, had been published in the Dissenters March newspaper.