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Russia refuses to exchange Gryb for Russian mercenary Sedikov

Russian Alexey Sedikov was sentenced to 11 years of imprisonment
17:28, 22 March 2019

Pavlo Gryb, the Ukrainian political prisoner
Hromadske

Russia rejected Ukraine’s proposal to exchange Ukrainian political prisoner Pavlo Gryb sentenced to six years of imprisonment for Russian mercenary Alexey Sedikov sentenced to 11 years behind bars. Ukraine’s representative to the humanitarian subgroup of the Trilateral Contact Group on settlement of Donbas conflict Iryna Gerashchenko said that at the briefing, Ukrainian News reported.

She noted that Ukraine offered to exchange critically ill Gryb for Russian Sedikov, who also has serious health issues.

Related: EU calls for release of Pavlo Gryb, sentenced to 6 years imprisonment in Russia

“Taking into account the serious health condition of Gryb, me and Marchuk proposed to conduct an exchange. We were ready to pass one Russian Sedikov who had heath issues. One for one considering the health issues. Russians don’t even know the names of those kept here and they have no interest or readiness [to negotiate],” Gerashchenko said.

She stressed that Ukraine does not recognize the verdict announced by the Russian court and regards Gryb a political prisoner.

As we reported earlier, on March 22, the Russian court sentenced Ukrainian Pavlo Gryb to six years in standard regime penal colony for terrorism. Pavlo Gryb announced a hunger strike.

Related: It is death verdict, my son will die from hunger strike, - Pavlo Gryb’s father

As is known, Pavlo Gryb is the son of the former Ukrainian border guard Ihor Gryb. Russian special agency detained the 19-year-old boy on August 25, 2017, when he went to Gomel (Belarus) to meet his friend. Later, he was convoyed to Russia. The Russian law enforcers suspect Pavlo Gryb of preparing a terrorist attack at a school in Sochi (a city in Krasnodar Krai, Russia, located on the Black Sea coast, - 112 International).

Pavlo Gryb was not allowed to see his mother and the Ukrainian consul. Russia promises to give permission to the meeting with the consul, but only after the verdict. Yet, the consular convention signed between Ukraine and Russia does not provide for such refusal.

Related: Gryb delivers last plea in court, wishes political prisoners to 'endure captivity with dignity'

On March 21, Ukrainian political prisoner Pavlo Gryb delivered his last plea in North Caucasus military court in Rostov-on Don, Russia. 

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