Volodymyr Balukh, a Ukrainian political prisoner, who is on a hunger strike for almost three months in a Crimean remand prison, is in a critical condition, as Mariana Betsa, Ukraine’s Foreign Ministry Spokesperson, wrote on Twitter.
“The political prisoner Balukh is in a critical condition. It is about days. Despite this, the occupant is illegally keeping him in custody,” Betsa wrote.
As it was reported earlier, Volodymyr Balukh, the Ukrainian citizen illegally judged in the occupied Crimea claimed that he goes for a timeless hunger strike. Balukh protested against the verdict in his case, announced in January 2018. The jury sentenced him to three years and five months for the alleged storage of ammunition. As it is currently effective, the detainee now serves time in jail.
In December 2013, when the Euromaidan movement began in Ukraine, Balukh supported its activists and hoisted a Ukrainian flag over his house. It remained there – even after the so-called referendum in Crimea in spring 2014 when people were forced to vote for Crimea’s recognition as part of the Russian Federation. Balukh said he never recognized the peninsula as part of Russia.
Volodymyr Balukh was detained by the Russian FSB (federal security service) in his house in December 2016. The law enforcers said they found 90 cartridges and several TNT blocks on the house’s rooftop. After that, he was sentenced to three years and seven months of imprisonment.