Public center “Red Roof”, opened by Russians, closed in Bishkek due to pressure

The organizers of the Red Roof public center, opened in Bishkek by visiting Russians, closed due to pressure from law enforcement agencies. This was announced on March 23 by the founders of the center.

According to them, during the work of the center they “knew the palette of influences of law enforcement agencies.”

“Guys in caps are hiding in the sparse bushes at the entrance and are filming. The precinct puts our wonderful landlord on the verge of raising the pressure by claiming that she “covers you know what.” A water utility comes with threats to “take the case to court” for a debt of 2,000 soms, brave fellows from the tax office break in (?!), and upon demand to show documents, they reluctantly present a “decree on the right to conduct a raid in the sphere of circulation of alcohol-containing products”. Operas grab our friends in the city center and imposingly show folders with materials of long-established surveillance, ”they said.

Read related: In Bishkek, Russian citizens announced pressure from the Ministry of Internal Affairs and the State Committee for National Security

In addition, the organizers of the “Red Roof” said that two friends of their center were asked to resign from the state organization “of their own free will”, because “there was a call from above.” Also, according to them, such a dismissal affected another person who was considered “connected with the Red Roof.”

They recalled that earlier one of the law enforcement officers warned them that Russians could be expelled from Kyrgyzstan for “any one violation.”

“The situation that is happening is outrageous and illegal. The bitterest thing is that we are very legally vulnerable to assert our right to freedom of expression. As the district police officer Ruslan, who comically hides his last name and is very afraid of voice recorders, said:

“Do something – we’ll write a report and send you out.” Our wonderful lawyers are forced to state sadly that they will not be able to protect us, ”the center said in a statement.

This is not the first time Red Roof members have spoken of pressure from law enforcement. Earlier, on February 24, several participants of the center laid flowers at the sculpture “The Earth is Our Home” in Bishkek’s Oak Park on the anniversary of the Russian army’s invasion of Ukraine. For this they were arrested and fined.

They were also interrogated because of the action with colored ribbons with the Ukrainian flag, which were hung in Bishkek by 24 February. Then the Russians reported that law enforcement officers told them to “sit quietly” and “live like everyone else.”