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In the colony of the Russian Federation, where Kostenko is being held, a conflict occurred: relatives are concerned about the fate of the Crimean

Александр Костенко

In Russia, in the penal colony No. 5 in Kirovo-Chepetsk, which contains the Ukrainian political prisoner Alexander Kostenko, there was a conflict between the convicts that turned into a brawl involving 20 convicts on 19 March.

According to the press service of the Federal Penitentiary Service of Russia for the Kirov region: “the employees of the duty shift stopped the illegal actions of the convicts and at 8.45 pm the participants in the events were taken to cells. The instigators of the conflict were identified and placed in a punishment cell. All convicts are examined by medical personnel. One participant in the conflict was detected abrasions and bruises, he was provided with qualified medical care. The life and health of the convicted person is not under the threat.

Special means, physical strength and weapons were not used by the staff. The situation in the institution is under control, the daily routine of the convicts is carried out in full. “Investigative Directorate of the Investigative Committee of Russia in the Kirov region conducted a pre-investigation check; establish the circumstances of what happened.

The Crimean human rights group contacted + 7833614-64-92 number and reached the on-duty service of the correctional facility-5, the duty officer said: “… I saw Kostenko this morning during the check and everything was fine with him.”

Relatives of Alexander Kostenko told the CHRG that since Friday they have no information about him. Taking into account that Alexander has repeatedly conflicted with convicts who participated in military operations in the east of Ukraine and have an anti-Ukrainian stance; relatives are concerned about the lack of reliable information about his whereabouts and health.

As previously reported by the Crimean human rights group, during the consideration of the cassation appeal about the change in the term of imprisonment, Kostenko told the court on video conferencing that he was detained and beaten by FSS officers. He also said that now he is not receiving medical care, his hand is drying.

In April 2016, the Kirovo-Chepetsky District Court of the Kirov Region of Russia denied the Crimean in parole.

On 19 August, 2016 Kostenko was also denied replacement of the punishment in the form of imprisonment for a lighter one.

According to investigators, on 18 February, 2014, during the “riots” in Kiev, Kostenko caused bodily injuries to a member of the Crimean special unit “Berkut”. According to the officers the activist, without permission provided by law, illegally kept a rifled barrel at his residence. Kostenko did not admit his guilt. Kostenko’s case was unprecedented, as he was accused of participating in the events of February 2014, which occurred not even in Crimea, but in Kiev.

According to the CHRG experts, the process in this case is one of the most politicized processes against Ukrainian activists in Crimea.

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