Criminal proceeding began against Coca-Cola and Pepsico companies for their recognition of the illegal occupation of Crimea by Russia. Ukraine’s MP Georgiy Logvynskiy said this in Kyiv January 21.
“Coca-Cola and Pepsico officials might find themselves behind the bars. The Prosecutor’s Office of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea started the criminal proceeding under the article 364-1 of Ukraine’s Criminal Code (abuse of power by officials of legal person under private law)”, Logvynskiy posted at Facebook.
The Prosecutor’s Office of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea stated that Coca-Cola and Pepsico companies published brochures at their websites where Crimea was showed as part of the territory of the Russian Federation. Under the Ukrainian law, the temporarily occupied peninsula is an inseparable part of Ukraine’s territory. Thus, agency says, officials of the mentioned companies abused their authority, which harmed Ukraine’s state interests. The Prosecutor’s Office of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea added that materials of the criminal proceeding have been sent to the Prosecutor General’s Office.
As 112 International reported, Coca-Cola and Pepsi representative offices in Russia published the country’s map where Crimea is depicted as a part of Russia. Coca-Cola published the map at its page in Russian social network vk.com, and Pepsi – on its website.
At first, Coca-Cola published the map without Crimea, Kaliningrad region and Kurile Islands. After numerous pretensions from Russian users, the company submitted corrections to the map and published a new one, already with the mentioned territories.
Later, all maps were deleted from the page – with and without Crimea. However, the images were saved in Google cash.
After such actions made by the Coca-Cola Russian representative house, Ukraine-based users of Internet started to discuss boycotting the company and its products. The Ukrainian representative house apologized for the incident (pravda.com.ua).
“We’re sorry for the misconception. We do not support any political movements or parties. Our mission is to produce high-quality drinks. We work for peace and adhere to the norms of the international law”, the message said.
The representative house in Ukraine contacted the agency that published the content; the sides decided to delete the map, though it never aimed for geographic precision.
Presentation of production assets, published at the Pepsi website, showcased the Ukrainian peninsula as part of Russia.
As is known, Russia annexed Crimea in March 2014. After the so-called referendum, considered illegitimate by the international community, the Russian parliament claimed the peninsula part of Russia. After that, the U.S. and EU-imposed sanctions on Russia followed.