NewsRussia turns Crimea into major detention center for political prisoners from Ukraine

Russia turns Crimea into major detention center for political prisoners from Ukraine

Crimea under Russian occupation
Crimea under Russian occupation
Images source: © forum | Sergei Malgavko

3:58 AM EST, February 4, 2024, updated: 4:22 AM EST, March 7, 2024

The publication mentions that since 2014, Moscow embarked on imprisoning Crimean Tatars and other Ukrainians from the occupied Crimea. Following the full-scale invasion of Ukraine in 2022, the peninsula has turned into a "massive prison for citizens of Ukraine from the Kherson and Zaporizhzhia regions".

Olha Skrypnyk, the head of the Crimean Human Rights Group, recently reported that Russia is currently detaining at least 100 Ukrainian civilians, notably those abducted from the Kherson and Zaporizhzhia regions.

She further disclosed that only the detention of 53 such hostages has fully met international standards, with their names forwarded to the UN's Independent International Commission of Inquiry on Ukraine.

The actual number might be significantly higher and presently indeterminable. In certain instances, baseless accusations of "espionage" have been fabricated.

Detentions in Russia

A demonstration organized by soldiers' wives culminated in the detention of at least 27 individuals in central Moscow on Saturday. A majority of those detained were journalists, including representatives of foreign media platforms, conveyed by the Kremlin-independent Russian-language site Meduza.

"Road to Home," an association formed by wives of soldiers enlisted for war by Putin's regime, organized the demonstration. Held every Saturday, this event marked the ninth consecutive such protest and was timed to coincide with the 500th day of the draft in Russia. Around 200 people participated in this action, which began with the laying of flowers at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and the Eternal Flame. The Moscow prosecutor's office had cautioned beforehand about the repercussions of participating in "unauthorized mass events".

Meduza shared photos and short video clips depicting officers escorting individuals wearing vests labeled "Press" to police cars near Manezh Square in the Kremlin vicinity. The SOTA channel on Telegram reported that "almost all male journalists were arrested".

Those detained included foreign media workers from Agence France-Presse, Associated Press, Dutch public media NOS, and the German weekly "Der Spiegel," according to AFP. "About human rights" movement activists were also "escorted" to the police cars. They were transported to a police station in Moscow's historic district of Kitay-gorod. Meduza reported that all detainees were subsequently released.

Observers reported that police also detained seven other journalists covering the rally near Vladimir Putin's election headquarters on Pokrovka Street. These individuals were transported to a police station in the Basmanny District.


Related content