“According to Russian laws, Volodymyr Balukh has served the necessary term of the sentence. Now, he can now apply for parole. But it will play into the Kremlin’s hands. That is why it is a chance to be released, but at what cost,” she wrote.
Denisova called the reduction of the sentence by one month “the occupants’ mockery.”
The Ombudswoman has also reminded that Balukh has never admitted his guilt, he was always proud of his deeds and of being a Ukrainian.
Earlier, the deputy chairman of the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar people, Ahtem Chyigoz, reported that Ukrainian political prisoner Volodymyr Balukh was beaten up and threatened to get killed in the Simferopol remand center.
According to the Deputy Chairman, Balukh was taken out from his cell, severely beaten up and is threatened to get killed.'
Balukh was arrested on December 8, 2016, nine days after he nailed a plaque renaming his home No. 18 “Heroes of Nebesna Sotnya St’ in memory of the over 100 Maidan activists who were killed during Euromaidan. He had rejected demands from the head of the local council to remove it. During an irregular ‘search’ of his home, 90 bullets and several TNT explosive devices were allegedly ‘found’ in his attic. Kharkiv Human Rights Protection Group (KhPG) stated that he had no record of violence and the constant searches and series of administrative prosecutions he had faced since Russia’s invasion of Crimea for his openly pro-Ukrainian position made it inconceivable that he could have held anything illegal in his home. The implausibility of the charges was just one of several compelling reasons why the renowned Memorial Human Rights Centre declared him a political prisoner well before the trial.