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Ukraine's prominent artists, activists ask Sentsov to cease hunger strike

The political prisoner has been starving for 73 days now
10:51, 25 July 2018

Radio Svoboda

Artists and social activists from across Ukraine wrote Oleg Sentsov a letter, asking the political prisoner to cease the ongoing hunger strike. Over 50 people put their signatures, including poets Lina Kostenko, Ivan Malkovych, Serhiy Zhadan, actress Rymma Zyubina, painter Borys Yegiazaryan and others. Yevhen Zakharov, the head of the Directors Board of Ukrainian Helsinki Union for Human Rights posted this on Facebook.

'There aren't so many people with the willpower like yours. We know you don't like it when people say good things about you. But we need such volitive and stout-hearted man alive - so that one can go on and struggle for all of our guys you are ready to die for. We need you. Even from behind the bars, you managed to unite us all for this struggle', reads the message. 

'Sooner or later, in the near future, we will set you free. We are Ukraine and many people of good strong will in the civilized world. We ask you (to stop starving, - 112 International) on the behalf of all of us. On the behalf of those who value life and will above all. We ask you with respect and love', the letter says.

Related: Ukraine's Ombudsman comments on Sentsov's health condition

Earlier, it was reported that according to Nataliya Kaplan, Sentsov's cousin, he was in a terminal state. Though later, Kaplan herself denied this statement

Related: Russia's ombudswoman claims to talk to Sentsov, publishes photo of vide-conference

As it was reported earlier, Ukrainian movie director Oleg Sentsov and Crimean activist Oleksandr Kolchenko were detained by the Russian FSB in the annexed Crimea. Both were taken to Russia. Sentsov was charged with preparing a terrorist act in Crimea and sentenced to 20 years in the high-security penal colony. Kolchenko was sentenced to ten-years-long imprisonment.

Oleg Sentsov announced a hunger strike on May 14. This way, he demands that all Ukrainians detained in Russia and annexed Crimea be released. Sentsov said he was ready to die if the requirements were not fulfilled.

Related: Sentsov’s cousin denies her statement about his terminal state

Related: Sentsov’s sister says he is on edge of life and death

Related: Sentsov to shoot film called 'Numbers' - if released from Russian jail

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