Delegation of the European Union to Ukraine

Statement by the Spokesperson on recent developments in Crimea

Today the so called "Supreme Court" of Simferopol sentenced the Deputy Chair of the Mejlis, Akhtem Chyigoz, to eight years of imprisonment for "organising mass disturbances" in February 2014. The European Union has consistently followed the case of Mr Chyigoz and insisted upon his release, a call which we reiterate today. The banning of the activities of the Mejlis, their self-governing body and the persecution of its leaders, constitute serious and unacceptable violations of their rights. We expect charges against another Deputy Chairman of the Mejlis, Mr Ilmi Umerov, to be immediately dropped, and reiterate our longstanding position that all illegally detained Ukrainian citizens in the Crimean peninsula and in the Russian Federation must be released immediately.