5 October 2020
More than 600 academics, journalists, writers and public figures sign statement in support of historian Yury Dmitriev, whose sentence was recently increased to 13 years – Bumaga reports.
More than 600 historians, journalists, human rights advocates, writers, filmmakers and public figures have signed a statement in support of the historian Yury Dmitriev, whose sentence has recently been increased from 3.5 years to 13 years of imprisonment. The news was reported on the Human Rights Council of St Petersburg’s website.
Members of the Human Rights Council, participants of the St Petersburg PEN Centre, teachers, academics, municipal deputies and many others signed the statement.
The Human Rights Council of St Petersburg
The Human Rights Council of St Petersburg has defended Yury Alekseevich Dmitriev since his arrest on 13 December 2016. Their voluntary and professional support will continue. Yury Dmitriev is innocent.
On 29 September the Supreme Court of the Republic of Karelia handed down a new sentence on Dmitriev: 13 years in a maximum-security prison for the crime of violent sexual acts against a minor. The previous sentence was for 3.5 years and would have ended in November 2020.
Dmitriev was chair of the Karelian branch of the Memorial society which has called the verdict “cruel, illegal, unlawful and politically motivated”. At Memorial it is believed that this is the “revenge of the system” for perpetuating the memory of victims of Stalinist repression.
Bumaga has described elsewhere in detail what is known about this case.
Statement on the Trial of Yury Dmitriev by the Human Rights Council of St. Petersburg
Source: Human Rights Council
On 29 September 2020, the Supreme Court of the Republic of Karelia passed a cruel and unlawful judgment in the trial of Yury Dmitriev. The Human Rights Council of St Petersburg has defended Yury Alekseevich Dmitriev since his arrest on 13 December 2016. On two occasions, in 2018 and this year, we rejoiced at Yury Dmitriev’s acquittal on the majority of the false charges brought against him. We expected that in November 2020 Dmitriev would finally be released.
Yury Alekseevich Dmitriev is a historian and researcher into the location of the sites of secret Soviet executions. Thanks to him, the Zaretskoye cemetery in Petrozavodsk, Sandarmokh and Krasny Bor in Karelia, and the cemetery for those executed near the Svyato-Voznesensky monastery on the Solovki Sekirny mountain have become places of remembrance for the atrocities.
Voluntary and professional support will continue. Yury Alekseevich Dmitriev is innocent. He will undoubtedly be acquitted a third time by his grateful fellow citizens.
The disgraceful trial, started by vile and fabricated stories, has taken place not under the rule of a Tsar, or Lenin, or Stalin, not during the Thaw, or the era of Stagnation or Perestroika, and not even at the beginning of the 21st century. This is happening here and now. Do not stay silent.
For the list of signatories, see here.
Translated by Verity Hemp