Rapporteur urges Russia to drop charges against journalist in Crimea

A rapporteur of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) has urged Russia to drop the charges against Mykola Semena, a Crimean journalist whose trial for “separatism” and related offences is due to begin today

Marieluise Beck (Germany, ALDE), PACE’s rapporteur on “Legal remedies for human rights violations on the Ukrainian territories outside the control of the Ukrainian authorities”, said there had been a number of repressive measures against Semena, and other journalists in Crimea who had reported on the illegal occupation and annexation of the region by Russia.

“I reiterate the Assembly’s request, in a resolution a few weeks ago, to drop these charges. Show trials intending to reduce to silence what remains of the freedom of speech in the region are in clear violation of the principle of the rule of law.”