Savchenko's visit to Russia: Detailed story from its organizer

Author : Illya Novikov

Source :

All details about storyline of Savchenko's arrival. I'll tell you how it all happened
23:20, 1 November 2016

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On the fact that Nadiya Savchenko is considering to submit an appeal to court, she told me on October 11 in Strasbourg. She attended the PACE session, I came to lobby the adoption of Declaration on my another client’s case. During the conversation two well-known persons were present, and they promised not to tell anyone about it, and, judging by the further, they kept their word. I will not mention their names without permission.

After returning home, Nadiya began to make harsh statements in the media and quickly lose popularity and influence on the situation. At first I argued with her a lot, and even defended her, and then gave up. She believes that she is right and can do all things in her own way and say whatever she thinks, without choosing the words carefully. I wasn’t able to convince her that it means lost opportunities to do something useful for Ukraine, disappointment and split. I was disappointed more than anyone else because I invested time and effort in her release. Savchenko was supposed to be our tool for the liberation of other political prisoners. Such international support, which allowed forcing Putin to release her, could be gathered only once. For the second time this will not work out.

When Savchenko said she wanted to come to appeal, I first tried to dissuade her, but then I thought that in this could be a reason. Chances of Karpyuk and Klykh for exchange depend on attention to their case. Nadiya’s arriving might be very advantageous for the PR. The first risk was that she would not be allowed to cross the border just because of border guard’s head personal reinsurance. There are lots of ways, the easiest of which is - to carry passport for inspection and return it with the torn page. Unsuccessful attempt to arrive would look pathetic and would only spoil the impression. In any case, I would be the one responsible for the consequences.

Related: Vira Savchenko testifies against LPR leader Plotnitsky

We agreed that I would think about it and we will not discuss anything on it via any electronic channels. Two days later, we met in Kyiv with Vira Savchenko, and I told her that I am against this idea, but if her sister finally decides to go, I’ll help to organize the route. On the eve of the trial Vira sent a conditional "yes". I decided that it’s better for Nadiya to arrive in Minsk and then drive in the car to Moscow. In Minsk there is no effective control over most of the Russian-Belarusian border, so border guards supposedly would not stop her.

We blindly hired Belarusian driver, in airport he was meeting Nadiya, holding a banner with another name. This trip wasn’t illegal; the basic meaning of the maneuver was to avoid resolving the issue of Savchenko’s entrance by Moscow airport services. And to increase the effect of surprise, giving Moscow less time to come up with something nasty. In the province, perhaps it will be easier to do it, I decided.

I was wrong. Since July, the last time I went there by car, police control tightened. When they saw Nadiya’s Ukrainian passport, first said that by Minsk highway can drive only citizens of the Russian Federation and Belarus. All foreigners need to make a detour through the checkpoint in the Bryansk region. I wanted to send Nadiya back, but then border guard recognized her.

Then we had three very emotional hours. Driver was very upset and said that she was taken away to the room, and he does not know what to do. I already imagined tomorrow's headlines: "Savchenko arrested for espionage" and "Lawyer helps to bring the killer to prison." Vira Savchenko intensified chaos, on the phone demanding from me ti report what is happening there. At this moment I just flew from Prague to Moscow and wasn’t able to say what is happening at the border.

So I just told the driver to take her back, and bought a ticket for the morning flight to Sheremetyevo airport. Russian guards were already waiting for her. Anyway, they weren’t surprised. However, 40 minutes later she came out to the arrivals hall, I called her a taxi and it at half past nine she arrived in the Supreme Court.

The influx of Russian press in the Supreme Court began only after the photo of Nadiya in the lobby was posted on Twitter. Before that there were no journalists, Savchenko was not expected. The Russian administration is very greedy for PR reasons, and if they had more time to think, they would have done something interesting. Karpyuk and Klykh were genuinely excited seeing Savchenko in the hall, later REN-TV lied, that they ostensibly were unhappy and jealous that she got more attention. In one o’clock in the morning I took Savchenko to Sheremetyevo.

Related: Savchenko on main purpose of her visit to Russian Federation

Following the results of the voyage we have a sharp increase in attention to the case of Karpyuk and Klykh. In Russia, it seems, people have not yet decided what they should think about it. Everything is difficult there: she is "banderovka" and the killer – it is kind of bad, but she stands for peace in Donbas – it is good. Putin has pardoned her, and he was right, but she came to defend Ukrainian fascists, and it’s still strange that they did not put her to prison... So many senses at once do not fit at the head of Russian audience.

Someone wrote that the Russian media soon will use it to say, here, look, there is no war. But hey, they already say so. That there’s no war with brotherly Ukraine, but we are about to win it, but in general there is no Ukraine. Leave them alone; think about how to use the extra attention that Savchenko earned for us, for the benefit of the case. These conversations on occasion, they help to discuss serious things.

Related: Savchenko’s declaration: Sister’s cars and mother’s land

Related: “Putin is a nit:” Savchenko’s most scandalous statements


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