Seized in Ukraine, jailed in Russia

The plight of Denis Bakholdin, critic of Putin, refugee in Ukraine — seized in Ukraine, tortured and jailed in Russia

<< No. 25 (258) 26 June 2017 >>

bakholdin, denis

“We can stop this WAR! I demand the withdrawl of Russian troops from UKRAINE!”

After participating in many protests against the war in Ukraine and in support of political prisoners, Denis Bakholdin was detained on several occasions.

He was jailed for 10 days, for instance, after taking part in an anti-war protest on 4 March 2014, shortly after Russia invaded Crimea. In October 2014 he was detained in central Moscow wearing a mask similar to President Putin, wearing striped prison clothes and carrying a placard that read “war criminal” [for which he was not charged]. He later  moved to Ukraine and has been living there since the end of 2014.

On 17 March 2017 his mother, Nadezhda Bakholdina, was officially informed that her son had been arrested in Russia “while trying to illegally cross the Russian-Ukrainian border”. He is now being held in a pre-trial detention centre in Bryansk [west-central Russia]. According to Human Rights in Ukraine, the lawyer Svetlana Sidorkina has said that Denis Bakholdin is charged with “involvement in an extremist society” under Article 282.1 § 2 of the Russian Criminal Code.
Denis was subjected to torture after he was detained, says Nadezhda Bakholdina.
“She has only recently, on 5 June, been allowed to see her son. He told her that he had been chained with handcuffs to a radiator, beaten and kicked to make him ‘confess’ to being a member of the Right Sector.” Halya Coynash also reports that Nadezhda Bakholdina says her home was searched by FSB agents at the end of May “and the hard drive from her computer taken away.”
Halya Coynash, “Putin critic living in Ukraine seized, tortured and jailed in Russia,” Human Rights in Ukraine, 21 June 2017