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Dmytro Khyliuk held in a prison in Russia's Vladimir region – RSF

19.07.2023, 14:51

Dmytro Khyliuk, a UNIAN journalist abducted by Russian soldiers in March 2022, is possibly in one of the prisons in the Vladimir region of Russia, writes RSF in their report released on July 13.

According to RSF’s information, he was removed from Pre-trial Detention Centre No. 2 in Novozybkov, a small town in the far south-east of Russia, on around 13 May 2023.

Now Khyliuk is held in either Penal Colony No. 7 (IK-7) near Kovrov or No. 6 (IK-6) in Melekhovo. "The latter is a very high security prison with an appalling reputation," says the report.

The presence of Ukrainian detainees at IK-7 was confirmed to RSF by two soldiers who were imprisoned there and who were recently released. However, they could not confirm Khyliuk’s presence in this prison, which holds 1,200 detainees. They estimated that at least 300 Ukrainian soldiers and civilians are being held there.

Dmytro Khyliuk's lawyer Oksana Myhalevych told Slidstvo.Info that the last update from the journalist came from the International Committee of the Red Cross. The organization was in contact with Dmitro at the end of May 2023 and informed his parents that he was alive.

"Dmytro himself hasn't got in touch even once. His family only received a short note from him back in April 2022. It said: 'Dear Mom and Dad. I am alive and well. I'm fine. Dima,'" Mikhalevych said.

As IMI reported, UNIAN journalist Dmytro Khyliuk has been in Russian captivity for over a year. His official status is not that of a POW, but of a civilian hostage. Such prisoners should be released separate from military prisoner swaps, but the Russians are not doing this.

In May 2023, the Verkhovna Rada Commissioner for Human Rights, Dmytro Lubinets, said that he was personally monitoring the issue UNIAN journalist Dmytro Khyliuk's release from Russian captivity.

The Prosecutor General's Office has opened a case regarding the abduction of civilians on the territory of the Dymer hromada. The investigation considers journalist Dmytro Khylyuk and his father victims. The case was opened under Part 1 of Art. 438 of the Criminal Code (violation of the laws and customs of war).

Russian soldiers kidnapped Dmytro Khyliuk on February 26, 2022, in the garden of his own house in Kozarovychi. He was first kept in the occupied Dymer, and then taken to a prison in Russia.

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