Masha Lisitsyna is senior managing legal officer with the Criminal Justice Cluster, Open Society Justice Initiative. She specializes in the area of prevention and accountability for torture. Lisitsyna works on anti-torture litigation before domestic courts and international human rights bodies. She assists the Justice Initiative’s partners in developing their litigation strategies and engages in research and advocacy efforts aiming at improving anti-torture guarantees within criminal justice systems.
Prior to joining the Justice Initiative, Lisitsyna served as a Central Asia researcher at Human Rights Watch focusing on civil and political rights in Turkmenistan and the rights of migrant workers in Russia and Kazakhstan. Lisitsyna cofounded and served for more than 10 years as the executive director of Youth Human Rights Group in Kyrgyzstan where her team developed a human rights monitoring program focused on custodial institutions including orphanages, detention centers, and mental health institutions and run human rights education programs.
In 2005, Lisitsyna served as a member of Kyrgyzstan’s Constitutional Council, the body convened to work on constitutional amendments. Lisitsyna holds a JD from Kyrgyz-Russian Academy of Education. She has been recognized by the World Economic Forum in 2009 as a Young Global Leader.