EN|RU|UK
  33125

 Putin: "Sentsov is convicted for devoting his life to terrorism"

Russian President Vladimir Putin says Ukrainian director Oleh Sentsov is convicted not for his occupation, but for dedicating his life to terrorism.

Censor.NET reports citing TASS.

He also added Sentsov's imprisonment should be decided in court.

"We have to assume that we live in a state governed by the rule of law, and of course such issues should be decided by the court system," he said at the meeting of the Presidential Council for Culture and Art. "As for his (Sentsov's) art, he is convicted not for art, but for performing other functions, as investigative and judicial authorities put it. In fact, he devoted his life to terrorism."

On Oct. 21, Ukraine's Justice Ministry reported that Moscow refused to extradite Oleksandr Kolchenko and Oleh Sentsov. Explaining the rejection, Russia's Justice Ministry said the both Crimeans were Russian citizens and not covered by the agreement on the transfer of sentenced persons.

See more: Hollywood star Johnny Depp shows support for Oleh Sentsov. PHOTO

Since the beginning of Russia's military aggression against Ukraine, several Ukrainian citizens have been taken hostage by the Kremlin. The exact number of Russian-held Ukrainians is unknown. At this point, according to official data, some 20 Ukrainians are being held for political reasons in Russian prisons, including in occupied Crimea. The story of captive Ukrainian pilot Nadiia Savchenko caused massive public outcry.

Hennadii Afanasiev and Yurii Soloshenko were among the Ukrainian political prisoners held in Russia. Afanasiev was sentenced to seven years in prison as a suspect in the case against Ukrainian film-maker Oleh Sentsov charged with organizing a terrorist group in occupied Crimea and sentenced to 20 years in prison. Afanasiev was tried under a special procedure after he agreed to testify against other defendants. However, at the trial of Sentsov and Oleksandr Kolchenko, Afanasiev refused to testify, claiming torture during interrogation. Subsequently, Afanasiev was released by the Kremlin in exchange for several Russian citizens.
 
 
 
 up