How to build a democracy in exile?

Voices of the Russian opposition

programme Editor
Eelco Bosch van Rosenthal
Eelco Bosch van Rosenthal
in collaboration with

After three years in a prison camp, Alexei Navalny has died. He stands in a long tradition of politicians who did not survive their opposition to Putin’s regime. Today, 9 years after the murder of Boris Nemtsov on the streets of Moscow, former Duma member Dmitry Gudkov – currently in exile – will discuss the future of the opposition. How to work on an alternative to the corrupt and authoritarian system that has been in place under Putin – and that lays at the root of the Russian war against Ukraine?

How can the democratic opposition build a democracy in exile? Russian opposition and civil society have been pressed out of the country or prosecuted and put in jail. Those who were able to leave the country face various challenges with organizing themselves, like insecure migration possibilities and statuses, or financial trouble due to sanctions. Meaning, the democratic opposition has to build an opposition from exile – while scattered from over the world.

About the speakers

Dmitry Gudkov is a prominent Russian politician and an opposition figure. Having served in Russian Duma previously, he was exiled and is currently living abroad. In his current work, he advocates on behalf of Russian civil society. Gudkov is a member of the Russian Anti-War Committee.

Ekaterina Kotrikadze is the news director of TVRain, an independent Russian-language television channel, which was banned by the Russian government but continues to operate in exile, serving millions of Russian viewers daily.
She hosts daily news broadcasts for TVRain, as well as a weekly show about international affairs, where she has interviewed presidents, foreign ministers, and other key players on the global stage. Prior to joining TVRain, she was the head of the information service for RTVI.

Yevgeni Kiselеv (b.1956) is a Russian-Ukranian television host and political analyst. He started his career in Moscow and became famous in the 1990s and early 2000s as one of the co-founders of NTV, then Russia’s biggest independent privately owned television channel, and the anchor of Itogi, weekly news show that was considered by many to be the most influential television program of the time.

The hostile take-over of NTV  by Gazprom Media (Russian state gas monopoly media holding) in 2001 was the first major step in Vladimir Putin’s campaign to establish government control of Russian media. Since that time, Yevgeniy Kiselyov became one of the many Russian journalists who were put under government pressure and in the long run considered ‘persona non grata’ on national television – for this reason he finally chose to continue his career in neighboring Ukraine, moving there in 2008, what allowed him to work again as an uncensored political journalist. He is a member of the Russian Anti-War Committee.


Dmitry Gudkov Russian opposition politician, former member of the Duma
Ekaterina KotrikadzeJournalist TV Rain
Evgeny KiselеvTelevision host and political analyst
Kristina PetrasovaFree Russia Nederland

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