Ruslan Zeytullayev intends to continue his hunger strike until the delivery of judgment
Ruslan Zeytullayev, defendant in the Sevastopol “Hizb ut-Tahrir” case who has been on hunger strike for 17 days, intends to continue his hunger strike until the delivery of judgment in court of Rostov-on-Don.
As reported by Russian lawyer Anton Naumlyuk, who attended the court hearing.
As reported by Zeytullayev’s lawyer Edem Semedlyaev on his Facebook page, the medical service of the SIZO (pre-trial detention centre) has issued a certificate about satisfactory health of Zeytullayev.
At the same time, lawyer Emil Kurbedinov wrote on Facebook page that the pronouncement of a verdict in the case of Zeytullayev is scheduled for April 26 at 10:00 am.
Crimean Tatars started a flashmob in social networks, where they ask Zeytullayev to stop the hunger strike.
As a reminder, Ruslan Zeytullayev announced an indefinite hunger strike on April 4 during the court hearing in the North Caucasus District Military Court in Rostov-on-Don. He put forward a number of demands to the Russian authorities: to stop the criminal prosecution of Crimean Tatars under the articles “terrorism” and “extremism”, to allow the representatives of the MFA to visit him in the SIZO (pre-trial detention centre), as well as to release other defendants in the Sevastopol “Hizb ut-Tahrir” case.
On 7 September 2016, the North Caucasus District Military Court found Zeytullayev guilty of “participating in terrorist communities” and sentenced him to seven years of imprisonment.. The Russian Prosecutor’s Office appealed this decision to the Supreme Court of Russia and the case was sent to the North Caucasus District Military Court for reconsideration. Investigative authorities insist that Zeytullayev should not be considered as a participant, but as an organizer of the terrorist community. The corresponding article of the Criminal Code of Ukraine provides for a sanction up from 15 years to life imprisonment.
Representatives of the International Islamic political organization “Hizb ut-Tahir” called its mission to unite all Muslim countries into an Islamic caliphate. However they reject all kinds of terroristic methods to achieve their goals and believe their organization to be unfairly subjected to persecution in Russia. Russia’s Supreme Court banned “Hizb ut-Tahir” in 2003 and included it in the list of terrorist organizations.