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17.06.2019 Latest news

The trial against the three young men from Rostov-on-Don, Yan Sidorov, Vladislav Mordasov and Viacheslav Shashmin has started.

Here’s the link to the Media Advisory published today: https://www.amnesty.org/en/latest/news/2019/06/russia-baseless-trial-against-youth-activists-starts-in-rostov-on-don/

 

09.05.2019 Email address removed

We have received reports from activists that when writing to the email address of the Prosecutor of Rostov Region (included in the initial UA) in relation to the case of the three young men from Rostov-on-Don, Yan Sidorov, Vladislav Mordasov and Viacheslav Shashmin they receive a reply in Russian explaining that those letters will not be considered.

The digital alternative would be to use an electronic form in Russian only. We are trying to prepare a translation of the electronic form and instructions to fill it in, but in the meantime, please do continue posting letters to the address in the UA.

Three face jail for peaceful protest

AI-Index: EUR 46/0198/2019

The trial against three young men from Rostov-on-Don, in south-west Russia, Yan Sidorov, Vladislav Mordasov and Viacheslav Shashmin, is expected to start in May. They are being prosecuted for trying to organise a peaceful protest in November 2017 in support of dozens of Rostov residents who had lost their houses in mass fires. They could be sentenced to up to 15 years in jail if convicted. Yan Sidorov and Vladislav Mordasov have been in pre-trial detention and Viacheslav Shashmin under house arrest since November 2017. They are prisoners of conscience and must be released immediately and unconditionally.

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

At around mid-day on 5 November 2017, the then eighteen-year-old college student Yan Sidorov and twenty-one-year-old Vladislav Mordasov came to the square in front of the Rostov Region administration to hold a peaceful picket. They had several printed leaflets, a loudspeaker and two rolled up handwritten posters that they had made the day before. The posters read: «Return the land to victims of Rostov fires» and «The government should resign».

In a series of mass fires that spread through Rostov-on-Don in July and August 2017, more than 160 houses were destroyed, one person died, and dozens suffered injuries. Around 700 people were officially recognised as victims. While some compensation for the loss of property has been paid, the authorities did not allow people to build new houses on the same plots of land and did not pay compensation for the loss of their land, which in turn prompted rumours that the fire may have been started deliberately to evict the residents. In March 2019, more than 60 people signed an open letter in support of Yan Sidorov, Vladislav Mordasov and Viacheslav Shashmin.

According to Vladislav Mordasov’s statement of 6 August 2018, even before the two young men could unfold their posters and start the picket, a group of eight police officers from the Centre for Combating Extremism (Centre «E») approached them and demanded the protesters show them the posters. Some of the police officers filmed them on mobile phones. The two young men showed their posters without objection. The police then arrested them for holding an «unlawful picket». On the same day, the police arrested the then eighteen-year-old Viacheslav Shashmin outside a block of flats close to the square where Yan Sidorov and Vladislav Mordasov were arrested. Viacheslav Shashmin claims that he did not know Yan Sidorov and Vladislav Mordasov at the time and did not participate in their picket.

While in police custody, Yan Sidorov and Vladislav Mordasov were reportedly subjected to torture and other ill-treatment in an attempt to extract «confessions» that they were going to organize a violent demonstration. On 6 November 2017 Yan Sidorov and Vladislav Mordasov were sentenced in separate proceedings to seven days of «administrative detention» each under Article 20.2, part 2 of the Russian Code of Administrative Offences («Organization or conduct of a public event without proper notification of the authorities of this event»). Viacheslav Shashmin was given five days of «administrative detention» on spurious charges of «petty hooliganism» under Article 20.1 of the Russian Code of Administrative Offences.

While still serving their administrative detention, Yan Sidorov and Vladislav Mordasov were reportedly further interrogated and tortured. On 17 November 2017 Yan Sidorov and Vladislav Mordasov were officially charged with the crimes of «attempting to organize civil unrest» (Article 30, part 3, Article 212, part 1 of the Russian Criminal Code) and «attempting to participate in civil unrest» (Article 30, part, 3, Article 212, part 2 of the Russian Criminal Code). Viacheslav Shashmin was charged with «attempting to participate in civil unrest». The charges were slightly adjusted twice during the investigation. First, making their «crime» lighter, but on 19 March 2019 a new charge sheet was given to them which qualified their actions under the same Articles of the Criminal Code but as a more serious crime. If convicted, Yan Sidorov and Vladislav Mordasov could be sentenced to up to 15 years in jail and Viacheslav Shashmin – up to eight years in jail.

Yan Sidorov and Vladislav Mordasov remain in custody since their arrest on 5 November 2017. Viacheslav Shashmin has been under house arrest since having served «administrative detention» under «petty hooliganism» charges. Their detention is currently extended until 10 May 2019 after which their case could go to court.

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