The Russian Justice Ministry has placed the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar People on the list of organizations suspended on account of their extremist activities, the ministry spokesperson said.
"Today the list of public religious organizations suspended in connection with their extremist activities was extended to include the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar People," the spokesperson said.
The move comes after the Crimean prosecutor decided to suspend this public organization, the spokesperson said.
The Mejlis, an organization not registered in Russia, claims the title of a representative body of the Crimean Tatars.
Its current and former leaders – Ukrainian parliamentarians Refat Chubarov and Mustafa Jemilev – reside in Kyiv. The Crimean Prosecutor's Office thinks they played a part in the energy blockade of the peninsula.
Read also: Ban of Mejlis is outrageous attack on Crimean Tatars rights - EU
It was reported that the Crimean Supreme Court was examining a lawsuit filed by Crimean Prosecutor, Natalya Poklonskaya, to declare the Crimean Tatar Mejlis an extremist organization, and ban its activities in Russia.
"Mejlis is banned from using all state and municipal mass media, conducting various public events, using bank deposits and in general doing any work whatsoever. All their propaganda will be banned," Poklonskaya wrote on Facebook, on April 13.
"The decision to suspend the Mejlis will be in effect until the Republic of Crimea Supreme Court rules on my lawsuit that the this public organization be banned in the Russian Federation, in view of its destructive activity, and declared an extremist organization," the Crimean prosecutor said.
The following day, the European Union demanded a repeal of the decision banning the Crimean Tatar Mejlis as an extremist organization. A spokesperson for the European External Action Service described the decision as extremely alarming, and a serious attack on the rights of Crimean Tatars.