We received this message on 2 March from the Praxis Centre in Moscow, "an independent, voluntary collective, founded in 1998 by scholars and social movements activists grouped around the Victor Serge Public Library in Moscow.".
"Today in Moscow two rallies against the war were organised, but dispersed by the police. Of 1500 participants, over 400 have been arrested. Some are still inside the police stations.
"We call on you to demonstrate outside Russian Embassies, and to draft and sign petitions calling for a halt to Russian military intervention in Ukraine. It is truly very urgent in the current situation".
They send us the following document.
"Declaration of the central council of the 'University Solidarity' union of Russian university workers"
On the inadmissibility of Russian military intervention in Ukraine
On the prevention of a bloody conflict between the two brother peoples.De
The central council of the "University Solidarity" union expresses its concern at the situation caused by the decision of the Federation Council of the Federal Assembly of Russia on 1 March 2014, granting the president of Russia the right to use Russian armed force on the territory of Ukraine.
We believe that this decision does not help the defence of the Russian-speaking population of Ukraine and that it promises grave consequences. Support to the Russian-speaking citizens of Ukraine can be given by other means, by the means of state and popular diplomacy, by economic cooperation, by human rights.
We believe it necessary to use all the political and diplomatic means possible to avoid a bloody conflict between the two brother peoples. We are convinced that there is no problem in Russo-Ukrainian relations which would justify actions tending to provoke hostility between the two peoples. Once blood starts flowing, that will deal an irreparable blow to relations between Russians and Ukrainians.
The central council also expresses its concern at the administrative pressure being exercised on public sector workers, including education workers, to make them participate in political actions in favour of the intervention of Russian troops in Ukraine.
We should do everything we can to prevent a catastrophic course of events for the future of our peoples.