EU calls on Russia to provide proper treatment to Sentsov and release him

EU calls on Russia to provide proper treatment to Sentsov and release him

The EU calls on Moscow to provide Ukrainian film director Oleg Sentsov with proper medical treatment and release him immediately along with other Ukrainians, who have been detained illegally in Russia and Crimea.

"The European Union stands in solidarity with Oleg Sentsov and, in addition to swift and appropriate medical treatment, expects his immediate release, along with all illegally detained Ukrainian citizens in Russia and on the Crimean peninsula," reads the statement of Maja Kocijancic, the Spokesperson of the EU for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy/European Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations.

According to Kocijancic, Sentsov has shown incredible courage, determination and selflessness during his 145 days of hunger strike and his health has now deteriorated to a critical state.

"In refusing to provide him with appropriate medical treatment in an institutionalised medical setting, the authorities of the Russian Federation have violated his human rights as well as their own human rights commitments under international law, namely the European Court of Human Rights interim measure of 25 July this year," the statement says.

Kocijancic stressed that Oleg Sentsov had been jailed for alleged activities conducted on the Crimean Peninsula, the illegal annexation of which by the Russian Federation he strongly opposed. The EU considers the case to be in breach of international law and elementary standards of justice.

As reported, Oleg Sentsov’s lawyer Dmitry Dinze confirmed that his client would stop hunger strike on October 6. Oleg handed over a letter to the lawyer in which he told about the threat of force-feeding "within the framework of resuscitation procedure to save a patient's life." Therefore, Sentsov had to stop his hunger strike.

Ukrainian film director Oleg Sentsov was detained by Russian security services in Crimea in May 2014. He was sentenced to 20 years in a penal colony in Russia for alleged "plotting acts of terrorism." On May 14, 2018, he declared a hunger strike demanding to release all Ukrainian political prisoners held by the Kremlin.

About 70 Ukrainian political prisoners, including Ukrinform journalist Roman Sushchenko, are currently held in Russia and in Russian-occupied Crimea. Sushchenko was sentenced in Russia to 12 years in a high-security penitentiary for alleged espionage.


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