A Russian court in Rostov-on-Don sentenced three Crimean Tatar Muslims in the case of the Bilohirsk group of Hizb ut-Tahrir. All three men were sentenced to terms in a high-security prison on religious terrorism charges. Enver Omerov was sentenced to 18 years, Ayder Dzhapparov to 17 years, and Ryza Omerov to 13 years.
As First Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine Emine Dzheppar posted on Twitter, “These sentences are yet another proof of the suppression of dissent in Crimea by the Russian occupiers.”
As reported, the pre-trial investigation and trial took place with numerous procedural violations, and the defence’s evidence of the defendants’ non-involvement in the incriminated acts was completely ignored.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine had already strongly condemned the judgment of the Russian court, calling it “shameful.”
“We demand that the Russian Federation must cancel the court ruling and immediately release Enver Omerov and Ryza Omerov, Ayder Dzhapparov, as well as all Ukrainian citizens illegally detained and kept by Russia. Russia should stop its systemic political persecution in the temporarily occupied Crimea and fulfil its obligations as an occupying power in accordance with international law,” the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine stated.
The Ministry also called on the international community to condemn Russia’s use of political persecution against Ukrainian citizens and to increase political and diplomatic pressure on the aggressor state to release all the Ukrainians and Crimean Tatars illegally detained by the Russian Federation.
On the eve of the court hearing, the representatives of the occupying power stopped on the Kerch Bridge and illegally detained for about nine hours approximately 120 Crimean Tatars on their way to Rostov-on-Don to attend a court hearing in the Hizb ut-Tahrir case. As reported, the security officers took Crimean Tatars’ documents as if to check them and took photos of passports.
It will be recalled that Enver Omerov, Ryza Omerov, and Ayder Dzhapparov were illegally detained on the territory of the temporarily occupied Autonomous Republic of Crimea by law enforcement officers of the occupation administration of the Russian Federation on 10 June 2019 and transferred to Rostov-on-Don in violation of international law.