Russian democracy and civil rights activist. Member of Bureau of Federal Board of Solidarnost (“Solidarity”) united democratic movement. Director of the Anti-Corruption Policy Lab’s Discussion Club at the Higher School of Economics (Moscow).
Oleg Kozlovsky was born on May 8, 1984 in Moscow. He graduated from the Department of Computational Mathematics and Cybernetics at Moscow State University in 2006. In 2008, he received M.A. in Political Science from Higher School of Economics in Moscow. He is currently working on his Ph.D. in Political Science; its topic dedicated to non-violent political conflicts like “velvet” or “coloured” revolutions.
He joined Amnesty International in 2000 and soon was elected Spokesman of its Moscow Group.
From 2001 to 2007, he participated in the Union of Right Forces (SPS) political party and held various positions there including the Co-Chairman of SPS Moscow Youth and a Member of the party’s Moscow Board. He also represented SPS in one of the Moscow’s disctrict electoral commissions. He resigned and left SPS in April 2007 in protest against the party’s leadership taking too conciliatory a tone with the Kremlin.
In July 2004, he founded and became a Co-Chairman (and later, Chairman) of the Moscow Association of the Committee 2008 Supporters a.k.a. “Moscow: Free Choice.”
He organized a public action in support of the Orange Revolution in Moscow in November 2004. This was one of the first actions that brought together all democratic forces.
In March 2005, Oleg Kozlovsky was one of the co-founders of Oborona (“Defense”) youth movement and was elected as its Coordinator in June. Oborona’s goal is to establish a civilized, democratic political system in Russia. It declares that the current government’s policy of establishing a corrupted authoritarian rule is extremely dangerous for the future of the Russian people. Oborona uses non-violent civil resistance as its main weapon. In October 2010, Kozlovsky stepped down as a Coordinator to give way to the younger activists.
In March 2006, he participated in the “Jeans Revolution” in Minsk—a protest against rigged presidential elections in Belarus. He was arrested during the crackdown on the opposition’s tent camp, spent 15 days in jail on Okrestina Street and was included in the list of “people, who pose threat to the national security of Republic of Belarus.” He was banned from entering the country for one year but even three years later, in March 2009, he gets deported from Belarus by KGB.
Oleg Kozlovsky was one of organizers of the Dissenters’ Marches and Dissenters’ Days—the largest opposition rally in Russia. He has been arrested more than 20 times for preparing and participating in these and other peaceful protest rallies.
He participated in the Political Council of the Other Russia opposition coalition since November 2006 and joined the coalition’s Executive Committee in the summer of 2007.
He was arrested in November 2007 for participating in a Dissenters’ March and detained for 5 days.
In December 2007, Oleg Kozlovsky was drafted illegally into the army with the assistance of FSB. A civil campaign in his support ultimately led to his release on March 4, 2008—two days after the presidential elections.
The appartment that he was renting and Oborona was using for gatherings and storing literature was stormed by the police in March 2008. Kozlovsky and about 10 more activists were beaten and arrested. The appartment’s owners were later forced by the police to break the rent contract.
Oleg Kozlovsky was arrested once again in May 2008, a day before the inauguration of Dmitry Medvedev, charged with participation in a Dissenters’ March and sentenced to 13-day detention. He went on a hunger strike in protest; Amnesty International declared him a prisoner of conscience. Months later, he was cleared of the charges and the government was ordered to pay the compensation (which hasn’t been paid).
In spring 2008, he participated in founding of the National Assembly of the Russian Federation—a “proto-parliament” that united virtually every non-system political and civic organization. He was elected in absence (he was serving the detention term at the time) a member of Council of the National Assembly at its founding congress on May 17.
Oleg Kozlovsky participated in organizing committee of the united convention of democratic forces, which took place in December 2008 and founded Solidarnost (“Solidarity”) united democratic movement. Oleg Kozlovsky was elected as a Member of the movement’s Federal Board’s and a Member of the Board’s Bureau.
He received the Human Rights Award 2008 from Human Rights First in October 2008.
In 2010 was a Draper Hills Summer Fellow on Democracy and Development at Stanford University.
Married, has a daughter.