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Valentina Chupik

WHRD, Organisation Head
Tong Zhakhoni

Valentina Сhupik is a woman human rights defender and head of the NGO "Tong Zhakhoni", which  focuses on migration issues in Russia by offering free legal support to migrants who experience pressure from the law enforcement officers. She is a vocal critic of the migration and refugee system in Russia. In 2005, she fled her native Uzbekistan after the events in Andijan on 13 May 2005, when Uzbekistan's military opened fire on unarmed civilians resulting in a mass killing. In the aftermath of this massacre, Valentina Chupik was subjected to torture and inhumane treatment by the Uzbek authorities. She received refugee status in Russia in 2009 which was extended by the Ministry of Interior in March 2021.


The environment for the work of human rights defenders (HRDs) in the Russian Federation is difficult, especially for those who defend and promote the rights of LGBTI people, ethnic and religious minorities, refugees, as well as activists of the North Caucasus and the unlawfully annexed Crimean Peninsula. HRDs are often subjected to acts of harassment, surveillance, physical attacks, threat, raids and searches on their offices and homes, slander and smear campaigns, judicial harassment, arbitrary detention, and ill-treatment, as well as violations of the rights to freedom of expression, association, and assembly. There have also been cases where HRDs have been murdered as a result of their work.