–RUSSIAN MOTHERS GROUP IS RECOGNIZED
The Organization of Soldiers’ Mothers is to receive an Aachen Peace Prize on September 1 for its work in defending the human rights of Russian soldiers, the organizers of the prize announced on May 7. Alfred Steinbicker of the committee that chooses awardees said that “if our prize can contribute something to protecting these people who are under constant personal threat, then we have achieved something.”
Yet another example of Soviet-style disinformation in the post-Soviet Russian news media occurred when the Novosti news agency published a report alleging that Akhmed Zakaev, representative of the Maskhadov government in Western Europe, is on NATO’s formal list of international terrorists. The news agency’s sole source was an exhibit that it said had been organized by some thirty-five private firms from Western Europe and North America, for display “at the alliance’s headquarters.” It is not clear whether Novosti made any effort to confirm the separatist diplomat’s status with any official source in NATO or in a NATO government. NATO member Great Britain, as any journalist writing about Chechnya ought to know, granted Zakaev asylum last autumn after a long extradition trial that systematically considered and rejected the Kremlin’s charges that he is a terrorist.