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Violinist Gidon Kremer performing in Moscow in 2011
Organizers say that star violinist Gidon Kremer has asked several of the greatest names in classical music to perform a concert with him in Berlin to draw attention to the human rights situation in Russia.

The 66-year-old Latvian violinist is planning a concert titled "To Russia with Love" in Berlin on October 7.

INTERVIEW: Why Russia's Opposition Must Be Bold, Even In Starting Small

He has invited Argentinian pianist Martha Argerich, Israeli-Argentinian conductor and pianist Daniel Barenboim, Georgian pianist Khatia Buniatishvili, and German cellist Nicholas Altstaedt to join him and his chamber orchestra, Kremerata Baltica.

The concert is to be held at Berlin's Philharmonic Hall.

"It's like it was in the Soviet Union, but...with different methods and not as draconian as in [Josef] Stalin's time," Kremer recently told the German daily "Die Welt" about the rights situation in Russia.

Based on reporting by AFP and artsjournal.com
Ukrainian journalist Oleh Bogdanov
The Committee To Protect Journalists (CPJ) says Ukrainian authorities "need to act urgently" to protect journalist Oleh Bogdanov.

Bogdanov was severely beaten by unidentified attackers near his house in the eastern city of Donetsk on July 21.

He was hospitalized with a broken jaw, a broken nose, and concussion.

Bogdanov works for the website Dorozhny Kontrol (Road Control), which reports on abuses committed by Ukrainian traffic police and other law enforcement agencies.

Bodgdanov told Ukraine's Channel 5 television that he believes the attack was connected to his work.

The CPJ's statement on July 22 said Bogdanov has been subjected to threats and an arson attack on his car.

The CPJ's Nina Ognianova called for the authorities to launch "an independent and effective investigation."

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"Watchdog" is a blog with a singular mission -- to monitor the latest developments concerning human rights, civil society, and press freedom. We'll pay particular attention to reports concerning countries in RFE/RL's broadcast region.

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