The Prague based humanitarian organization -Clovek v tisni-People In Need, reclaimed the right to operate on Russian soil following a controversial two year ban. The NGO was prohibited from working in Russia two years ago when the Russian government charged it with aiding terrorism. Prior to the ban, People in Need worked on charitable projects including education and funding for small business operations in area close to where fighting was going on in Chechnya. They assisted many children who had been traumatized by the fighting and played an important role in helping people to return to their normal life style after many years coping with fighting and violence. The Russian government has been particularly upset at NGOs because they can not be controlled and function, in a sense, out of the scope of the increasingly authoritarian style of President Putin. An NGO must register and spend considerable time filling out paper work and abiding with provisions of Russian law. Vojtech Raiek of the group is uncertain what led to the reversal of the ban.
The Putin government undoubtedly has a goal of gaining complete control over all aspects of Russian life that might allow outside voices to raise questions about Putin and what he is creating in Russia. It certainly remains unclear why this NGO is now being permitted to operate.