September 17, 2014

September 17, Moscow: Mikhail Khodorkovsky, the former political prisoner released in December 2013 after more than ten years in a Russian prison, will announce the launch of Open Russia during an online forum on Saturday, September 20.

The “Open Russia” foundation was established by Yukos shareholders and Khodorkovsky in 2001, with the aim of building and strengthening civil society in Russia. Open Russia will be a nationwide platform that brings together all Russians interested in creating a better life for themselves and their children.

Mr. Khodorkovsky stated:

“The old path of political self-organization is not possible today where you build an opposition political party with governing bodies and a vertical structure. This model is not only outdated but would be easily destroyed by the incumbent regime.

There is a different opportunity: a network structure, cooperation of small groups of public that gradually amass experience in joint action to assert their interests.  It is a less beaten and a longer path but it is the only correct one now.
This is what Open Russia sets out to do. Today we will assist in self-organization of a proactive and European-minded part of the society.”

The Open Russia online forum will unite ordinary Russians, activists, and experts, all participating live via Google platform from many regions in Russia and several cities abroad. The forum will be broadcast live on YouTube, on the new openrussia.org website (in Russian) and khodorkovsky22.com (in English). All forum participants will be able to engage in discussion and leave comments in chat rooms open on openrussia.org website.

Join the conference on September 20 at: 1 pm Moscow time.

Send your questions to the participants of the online forum to:

For more information please contact:

Kulle Pispanen   (in Russian)            Maria Logan (in English)
k.pispanen@openrussia.org              m.logan@openrussia.com