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Mikhail Savva: 'You have one less hostage, Gentlemen!'

posted 23 Feb 2015, 08:52 by Rights in Russia   [ updated 23 Feb 2015, 12:10 ]
19 February 2015

By Professor Mikhail Savva

Source: Website of Mikhail Savva

‘The probation service has asked the court to change my suspended sentence to a real term in prison. This had been long expected. If they had found me at my ‘place of permanent residence’ then they would have found some other reason to put me behind bars. Many variants are possible. For example, they could write, as they did in the case of Evgeny Vitishko, that I had used bad language at a bus stop (it should be noted that Evgeny had not even been at this bus stop)…But most likely they would have used some other means. After being questioned on 25 December last year I understood quite clearly that very soon they would present me with charges in one more fabricated case. The investigator’s questions were more than explicit: ‘Do you admit…’ The charge would have meant being held in pre-trial detention until the court hearing, and changing the three-year suspended sentence for a real term in prison, plus whatever additional term investigator Tsygankov of the local Investigative Committee and his minders from the regional FSB saw fit to add. Hoping for justice in Russia today is a real sign of weakness of mind. I left.

‘This is a reason to say my mind on the issue, much discussed in Russia, of ‘whether to stay or to go?’ It is not worth those whose student years are over leaving the country for the sake of a more comfortable life. There are more minuses than pluses. But if they are going to put you behind bars, a different kind of logic comes into play. The authorities in our country are at war with its people. Of course those who have inherited the mantle of the hangmen of the Soviet era are for the time being far from the scale of the Stalin repressions. They cannot yet allow themselves to take a mass approach. They work selectively. But here the differences end. Political prisoners in Russia are people who have been taken hostage by the regime in the course of this war. They treat them in ways that violate the law, have them convicted without any crime having taken place, extend their terms in prison with new alleged crimes, and create torturous conditions of detention. And if a war is being conducted against you, then act like a POW: "Survive, get free, struggle".’

See also: Yugopolis