Main witness in the "Crimean terrorists" case recanted his testimony
Hennadiy Afanasyev, witness of Kolchenko and Sentsov case stated that his previous evidence were extracted under duress
The only two witnesses Hennadiy Afanasyev and Oleksiy Chirniy, face 7 years of imprisonment, Oleh Sentsov and Olexander Kolchenko are threatened by 20 years or even life sentence
Hennadiy Afanasyev, witness of Kolchenko and Sentsov case stated that his previous evidence were extracted under duress.
The charges against the two men are based solely on Afanasyev's 'confession' and that of the fourth person, Oleksiy Chirniy, who also refused to give testimony in the court. They therefore received 7-year sentences, the minimum number under the ‘terrorism’ charges.
Oleh Sentsov and Olexander Kolchenko are facing 20-year, or even life sentence on charges of having sabotaged railway tracks and electricity lines and planning explosions near the eternal fire memorial and the Lenin monument in Simferopol. Kolchenko is also suspected of having carried out two arson attacks: against the headquarters of the Russian Unity-party and Russian Community of Crimea, as well as participation in far-right organization “Pravyi Sektor”.
Kolchenko and Sentsov do not admit the charges.
The charges are based solely on the testimony of two men who received minimum sentences for ‘cooperating’ with the prosecution. As reported earlier, Russia is claiming that Sentsov and Kolchenko are Russian citizens, essentially ‘by default’ because they did not formally express their intention to retain Ukrainian citizenship after Russia’s annexation of Crimea.
Kolchenko is an anarchist and antifascist who has participated in student and environmental actions. And he was under constant Nazi attack for his antifascist ideas. Sentsov is a famous Ukrainian filmmaker, who is imprisoned by Russia, despite international outcry and an open letter by prominent European film directors such as Pedro Almodóvar, Ken Loach, Béla Tarr and Wim Wenders.
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