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Written declaration No. 696 | Doc. 14984 | 04 October 2019

The Russian Federation must release all Ukrainian political prisoners

Signatories: Mr André GATTOLIN, France, ALDE ; Ms Boriana ÅBERG, Sweden, EPP/CD ; Ms Thorhildur Sunna ÆVARSDÓTTIR, Iceland, SOC ; Ms Petra BAYR, Austria, SOC ; Ms Marina BERLINGHIERI, Italy, SOC ; Mr Maurizio BUCCARELLA, Italy, NR ; Mr Boriss CILEVIČS, Latvia, SOC ; Mr Vernon COAKER, United Kingdom, SOC ; Ms Dubravka FILIPOVSKI, Serbia, EPP/CD ; Lord George FOULKES, United Kingdom, SOC ; Mr Tom van GRIEKEN, Belgium, NR ; Ms Inga GRIGORIU, Republic of Moldova, EPP/CD ; Mr Momodou Malcolm JALLOW, Sweden, UEL ; Ms Susan Elan JONES, United Kingdom, SOC ; Mr František KOPŘIVA, Czech Republic, ALDE ; Ms Elvira KOVÁCS, Serbia, EPP/CD ; Mr Jacques MAIRE, France, ALDE ; Mr Gianni MARILOTTI, Italy, NR ; Mr Ian MURRAY, United Kingdom, SOC ; Ms Carina OHLSSON, Sweden, SOC ; Mr Martin POLIAČIK, Slovak Republic, ALDE ; Mr Thomas PRINGLE, Ireland, UEL ; Mr Roberto RAMPI, Italy, SOC ; Mr Frank SCHWABE, Germany, SOC ; Mr Egidijus VAREIKIS, Lithuania, EPP/CD

This written declaration commits only those who have signed it.

We, the undersigned, declare the following:

Oleg Sentsov, a Ukrainian filmmaker, was released as part of a prisoner exchange between Ukraine and the Russian Federation alongside 34 other Ukrainians, illegally held in Russian prisons.

The international community, including the Council of Europe, must not forget the remaining 86 prisoners and over 220 hostages imprisoned on the Russian-occupied territories in Crimea and Donbas. The cases of Dzhemil Gafarov, Stanislav Aseyev, Nariman Memedminov and Server Mustafayev are tragic examples of imprisonment and torture.

As indicated in Written Declaration No. 674, the Russian authorities continue to oppress the local Tatar community in occupied Crimea. The persecution has escalated despite the Russian Federation’s recent return to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe.

The impunity of the Russian State officials and their collaborators with respect to their gross human rights violations encourages them to commit further crimes. Hence, personal sanctions must be applied to those accountable for gross human rights violations.

We hereby call for the immediate release of all Ukrainian political prisoners, held in detention by the Russian Federation.