Save Crimean political prisoners at risk: ZMINA organises an event in Brussels

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Human Rights Centre ZMINA in cooperation with Permanent Representation of the Czech Republic to the European Union organises an event “Save Crimean Political Prisoners at Risk: Lawyers’ and Relatives’ Testimonies” at rue Caroly 15 in Brussels on October 19 at 16:00 CEST.

There are 186 political prisoners from the temporarily occupied Crimea. Illegally detained. Isolated. Intimidated. Tortured.

Russian occupiers not only conduct night searches in the homes of peaceful families in Crimea and unjustly detain ordinary civilians but also humiliate them in every way, imprison them in inhumane conditions and refuse to provide them medical assistance.

45 political prisoners suffer from chronic diseases, disabilities or elderly age. At least 21 of them need urgent medical assistance, they are at risk of dying behind bars. This year, two Crimean political prisoners – Dzhemil Hafarov and Kostiantyn Shyring – have already lost their lives in the places of detention.

Many prisoners in the occupied Crimea are denied urgent hospitalization despite the need, they are not provided with the necessary medical care or medicines in the institutions of the penitentiary system, the administration does not respond to the complaints of their lawyers regarding the lack of medical care. This creates irreparable damage to health and threatens lives.

Each person worldwide, including those in prisons, has the right to health. Inhuman conditions in detention, in particular the denial of medical care, amount to torture or other ill-treatment and is strictly prohibited by international law.

At the event human rights defenders, lawyers and relatives of political prisoners will discuss:

  • Stories of those who suffer from the non-provision of medical aid behind bars;
  • Legal qualification and ways of bringing perpetrators to accountability;
  • Sanction list of those responsible for violation of political prisoners’ rights;
  • The mechanisms and potential points of influence for solving this problem.

Opening remarks:

  • Ambassador Vsevolod Chentsov, Head of the Mission of Ukraine to the European Union and the European Atomic Energy Community

  • Veronika Mitkova, Human Rights Director, MFA of the Czech Republic

  • Tamila Tasheva, Permanent Representative of the President of Ukraine in the Autonomous Republic of Crimea


  • Viktoriia Nesterenko, Human Rights Centre ZMINA
  • Kateryna Yesypenko, wife of political prisoner Vladyslav Yesypenko
  • Leviza Dzhelyal, wife of political prisoner Nariman Dzhelyal (online)
  • Bronislav Danylovych, father of political prisoner Iryna Danylovych (videomessage)
  • Miguel Martín Zumalacárregui, World Organization against Torture (OMCT)

Moderator: Nora Wehofsits, Human Rights House Foundation

For the registration, write to the contact person: Tetiana Zhukova, Human Rights Centre ZMINA,