Yelena Bonner (1923-2011) was a Soviet human-rights campaigner.
Disillusioned by the Soviet invasion of Czechoslovakia in 1968, she resigned from the Communist Party (CPSU) after marrying her second husband Dr. Andrei Sakharov in 1971, and became active in the dissident movement.
Bonner was brought up in Leningrad by her grandmother after the arrest and subsequent imprisonment and execution of her parents in Stalin's "great purge" of 1937.
She suffered serious eye injuries while fighting for the Red Army during World War II and afterwards worked as a doctor.
She joined the CPSU in 1965. Following hunger strikes by Sakharov, she was granted permission to travel to Italy for specialist eye treatment in 1981 and 1984, but was placed in internal exile in Gorky 1984-1986.
Why is Yelena Bonner famous?
Yelena Bonner was a human rights activist in the former Soviet Union.