Call for an independent review of cases of political prisoners in Ukraine
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The Ukrainian government is systematically repressing political expression through unlawfully incarcerating members of its opposition, thereby violating Articles 3, 9, 10, and 11 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
As evinced by the cases of the individuals listed below, the practice in Ukraine appears to be such that, under the guise of maintaining law and order, persons active in the political sphere are being unlawfully detained and prosecuted.
We feel it is crucial to raise a voice in defence of the individuals who are currently detained on false charges and urgently request an impartial review of their cases:
1. Oleh Odnorozhenko, PhD - leader of the ‘Patriots of Ukraine’ in the city of Kharkiv and internationally recognised expert on heraldry. Married and has three children, the youngest of which was born during the time of his detention. Detained in Kharkiv prison on a customised case where there are neither witnesses nor victims.
2. Andriy Beletsky – born in 1979. Founder of the ‘Patriots of Ukraine’ and initiated the establishment of the Social-National Alliance. Married and has one son.
Arrested as a suspect in the fictitious ‘case Koleskik’ on 27/12/2011 and detained in Kharkiv Prison.
3. Igor Mosiychuk – member of ‘Patriots of Ukraine.’ Suspect in the fabricated
"Vasilkovskoy Terrorists" case. Judge: Yuriy Burbel.
4. Vladimir Shpara – member of ‘Patriots of Ukraine.’ Suspect in the "Vasilkovskoy Terrorists” case.
5. Sergei Bevz – member of ‘Patriots of Ukraine.’ Suspect in the "Vasilkovskoy Terrorists” case.
6. Vitali Knyazheskyy – born in 1980. Deputy Chief of the Social-National Alliance and member of ‘Patriots of Ukraine.’ He was involved in the events of 18/10/2008 in the Khreschatyk and held for two days in Kiev ITT. On 23/08/2011 he was wounded while trying to repel an attack on the office of the ‘Patriots of Ukraine’ in Kharkiv. He received three bullet wounds in the region of the heart and one through his hand. He was transferred from the Kharkiv Institute of Emergency Surgery to Kharkiv prison where he is held as a suspect in these affairs.
7. Igor Mikhailenko – born in 1988. Member of ‘Patriots of Ukraine’ and organiser of nationwide seminars. He was involved in the events of 18/10/2008 in the Khreschatyk and held for two days in Kiev ITT. On 23/08/2011 he was wounded while trying to repel an attack on the office of the ‘Patriots of Ukraine’ in Kharkiv. Received a gunshot would to the neck. He was transferred from the Kharkiv Institute of Emergency Surgery to Kharkiv prison where he is held as a suspect in these affairs.
8. Eugene Kravchun – Chairman of the Kharkiv branch of ‘Patriots of Ukraine.’ Arrested on 6/6/2012 for his participation in a clash during a protest in 2010 against deforestation in Kharkiv.
9. Alex Parshakov – born in 1990. Member of ‘Patriots of Ukraine.’ On 31/07/2011, while protecting the lives of minors, a fight broke out involving Parkashov and a group of Crimean Tatars and resulted in the death of one of the individuals involved. Parkashov is presently detained in a prison within the Zaporozhia region on the unmerited charge of premeditated murder.
10. Alexander Radolov, Dmitry Svitanko, Anton Shamov, Anton Boyko -
Accused of setting fire to the Melitopol City District Court on 1/5/2011 and the inter-district Melitopol Prosecutor’s Office on 19/9/2011 as a protest against the state and its police, judiciary, and the criminal manner in which these bodies operate.
11. Vladislav Popovic, Anatoliy Popovic, Andriy Bondarenko, Sergei Yarmolenko, Rustam Urazheldyyev, Dmitro Volyk: also known as “Nizhynsky Robin Hoods” – a group of six from the city of Nizhyn, Chernihiv oblast.
Headed by Vladislav Popovic, the non-violent vigilante group began tracking drug dealers in November 2009 following a drug related ordeal involving Vladislav’s younger brother, Anatoliy Popovic. Under the pretence of individuals looking to buy drugs, the group was able to obtain video footage of drug dealers testifying to having paid bribes to the police.
December 2009 saw the first case against the group who were accused of being a criminal gang which has illegally acquired property and money to the value of over 100,000 UAH (approx. 12,330 USD).
On March 13th 2010 the “Nizhynsky Robin Hoods” presented their video footage at a press conference at the Nizhyn School. On April 13th 2010 they were sentenced to 7 – 12 years in prison. Judge: Andriy Steblin.
12. Sergei Pavlychenko and his father, Dmitro
Pavlychenko - accused of the assassination of Judge Sergei Zubov from the Shevchenko District Court of Kyiv. There is, however, a significant lack of evidence to link these two individuals to the murder, with none of the witnesses having been able to identify them as the culprits. They are nevertheless detained in Lukianivska Prison.
13. Vitali Zaporozhets – shot and killed the corrupt police official, Nicholas Simonenko, in defence of the Semipolki village which was subject to frequent police terrorism.
Witnesses to this incident have been further threatened and beaten by officers in an attempt to prevent them from giving evidence in court. Reports state that the villagers in Semipolka are incredibly frightened and are reluctant to speak about the events. The prosecution calls for life imprisonment. Judge: Tamara Mihiyenkova.
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