The Kremlin uses NGOs to achieve its goals both inside and outside Russia. Domestically, pro-Kremlin NGOs help shore up support for the government and suggest the presence of an active third sector. In the international realm, they are a key part of the Kremlin’s kleptocracy network, as they lure in foreign actors and fund local partners. Furthermore, pro-Kremlin NGOs manipulate open societies in order to promote the Kremlin’s views, stir divisions and distract international communities from more pressing issues.
Regardless of their primary goals, pro-Kremlin NGOs take resources away from independent NGOs, marginalize discussions of human rights, and erode democratic norms, serving as a key tool for disseminating the Kremlin propaganda and disinformation.
About the author:
Olga Shorina, a co-founder of Boris Nemtsov Foundation for Freedom and a Free Russia Foundation fellow.
She worked with Boris Nemtsov, as a first as a press-secretary of Solidarity movement (2009-2012) and then as an executive director of PARNAS party (2012-2015). Took part in preparing Nemtsov’s independent research report on corruption in Russia, the Sochi Olympics, and the last one «Putin.War» which he planned to publish and which was finished by his colleagues.