Ihor Gryb, the father of Ukrainian political prisoner Pavlo Gryb published the letter that his son addressed the Ukrainian government. On July 1, Pavlo marks his 21st birthday, while staying behind the bars at remand center No.4 in Rostov-on-Don, Russia.
The text of Gryb's letter is uploaded on his father's Facebook page.
"I, Pavlo Gryb, the Ukrainian patriot judged for 'aiding terrorist activity' and sentenced to six years of imprisonment, turn to the Ukrainian government, president of Ukraine, lawmakers of the Verkhovna Rada, the government of Ukraine - along with all political prisoners, on the behalf of all Ukrainian military, the political prisoners of Putin's regime. Seal our fate at last!", reads the said letter.
He turned to the civil society, people of art, the military, nationalist forces, volunteers, chaplains, local communities and all those who care about political prisoners.
"Do not stay aside, do not forget the prisoners! Say a word about us - at home, at work, in the social networks, in the media. One has to reveal the truth about persecutions of patriots of Ukraine by Muscovite special services", Gryb wrote.
He insisted it cannot go on this way, reminding that there's a need to start negotiations on the new round of exchange.
"The number of political prisoners is only growing, unfortunately. Currently, there are more than a hundred people... How many more absolutely innocent people should get arrested to get things moving eventually? Two, three, four hundred people? Breaking lives and damaging health of so many Ukrainians was not enough? One could not think of that before - more than a hundred inmates (...)", reads the letter.
Pavlo expressed concern that this year, due to "all possible sorts of trouble, events and elections" people tend to lose focus on more and more Ukrainians getting imprisoned. "This means you cannot surprise anyone with this. This should not become a casual thing - under any condition. Learning that another man was brought to jail can't be a normal thing. We shouldn't let that happen", Gryb wrote.
In August 2017, Pavlo Gryb was detained by Russian special service as he came to Belarus to meet his girlfriend. The young man, the son of State Border Guard officer Ihor Gryb was taken to Russia and charged with "aiding terrorist activity". The prosecutors decided he was going to prepare a terrorist act in Sochi, southwestern Russia. Ukraine denies these charges, demanding that Russia release Gryb and calling the whole case political.