On Saturday, January 15 the Movement for the Defence of Khimki Forest held an event to mark the trees destined for destruction by the motorway. Activists adopted trees by marking them with their names as a pledge to defend the forest from the road construction, which is expected to start in about a month’s time unless a last-minute miracle occurs. To our great pride, one of the trees was marked for CEE Bankwatch Network.
For this peaceful gathering, four activists were arrested at gunpoint and organiser Evgenia Chirikova’s house was put under observation by unknown persons in an unmarked car. These and a recent arrest of Evgenia Chirikova suggest that now that the Kremlin has spoken, any public statement in favour of protecting Khimki Forest is a punishable act.
Meanwhile the EBRD has recently confirmed that it has not worked on the project for the last 11 months, and also the EIB’s assessment of the project is currently on hold, bringing greater certainty that the banks will not be involved in financing this blood-stained section of the motorway.
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