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Presidential Representative Office in AR Crimea condemns journalist Ametov's sentence

29.12.2022, 18:02

The Representative Office of the Ukrainian President in the Republic of Crimea condemned the sentence issued by a Russian court to Crimean citizen journalist Ernes Ametov. The Office said so in their statement.

"The terrorist state keeps violating human rights in the occupied Crimea, unlawfully persecuting and detaining Ukrainian citizens. The Representative Office condemns the unlawful sentence against Crimean Tatar Ernes Ametov, and does not recognize it as legitimate. He, like others illegally imprisoned by Russia, must be released," the statement reads.

The Representative Office added that "the freedom and safety of our people is only possible after the de-occupation of the Crimean Peninsula."

As IMI reported, on December 29, Russia's Southern District Military Court, Rostov-on-Don, sentenced Crimean citizen journalist Ernes Ametov to 11 years in a high-security prison as part of the "Crimean Muslims case", falsified by the FSB.

On December 27, the Russian prosecution demanded 18 years and 6 months of imprisonment for Ernes Ametov.

According to "Graty", on October 12, 2017, officers of the Russian FSB detained and then arrested Timur Ibragimov, Marlen (Suleiman) Asanov, Memet Belyalov, Seyran Saliyev, Server Zekiryaev and Ernes Ametov. All of them are members of "Crimean Solidarity" – an association of lawyers, relatives of political prisoners, and activists which provides assistance to Crimeans who have been persecuted for political or religious reasons.

Edem Smailov and "Crimean Solidarity" coordinator Server Mustafayev were detained and arrested later – on May 22, 2018.

According to the investigation, all the detainees were members of a cell in the Islamic party "Hizb ut-Tahrir", which has been banned in Russia in 2003, but operates freely in Ukraine and most European countries. Marlen Asanov, Timur Ibragimov, and Memet Belyalov stand accused of "organizing the activities of a terrorist organization" (Part 1 of Article 205.5 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation). The prescribed penalty ranges from 15 years in prison to a life sentence.

The other five men are accused of participating in a terrorist organization (Part 2 of the same Article 205.5 of the Criminal Code of Russia) with a possible penalty of 10 to 15 years in prison. All eight are also being accused of preparing a violent coup (Part 1 of Article 30, Article 278 of the Criminal Code of Russia).

All defendants plead not guilty of terrorism and say they are being persecuted on political and religious grounds.

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