April 9, 2015

Ecologist Evgeny Vitishko goes on hunger strike

The Krasnodar ecologist Evgeny Vitishko has declared a hunger strike to protest against the refusal of the Supreme Court (SC) to consider his appeal.
The "Caucasian Knot" has reported that the judicial board on criminal cases of the Russian Supreme Court refused to consider the cassation appeal filed by Evgeny Vitishko against the decision of the Tuapse City Court, which replaced his conditional sentence with three years of imprisonment in a penal settlement-colony.
In June 2012, Evgeny Vitishko, an activist of the "Ecological Watch on Northern Caucasus" (EcoWatch), was sentenced to three years of conditional imprisonment on charges of damaging a fence around the territory known as a "summer cottage" of Krasnodar Governor Alexander Tkachov. In December 2013, the ecologist was transferred to the Tambov Region.
According to Elena Shmakova, a common-law wife of Evgeny Vitishko, the ecologist expresses his protests against the refusal of the Russian SC to consider his appeal against the decision of the Tuapse City Court. The woman has also added that starting from today, Evgeny Vitishko "drinks only water."
"At present, all our hope is on neutrality of the Kirsanov District Court of the Tambov Region, which is to decide on release of Evgeny Vitishko on parole," said Andrei Rudomakha, the coordinator of the "EcoWatch".
Advocate Marina Dubrovina has noted that the defence intends to complain to Vyacheslav Lebedev, the Chairman of the Supreme Court of Russia. The defence of Evgeny Vitishko has already appealed to the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR).

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