Zavolzhskiy district court in the Russian city of Tver sentenced a local citizen Andrey Bubeyev for reposting in Vkontakte social network an article claiming “Crimea is Ukraine” to two years three months in a penal colony.
The verdict was announced on May 5 after the court debate, Bubeyev’s lawyer Svetlana Sidorkinareported from the courtroom, according to RFE/RL.
Bubeyev was charged with public calls to commit extremism and activities aimed at “violation of the territorial integrity of Russia."
Persecution was launched after the man reposted an article titled Crimea is Ukraine" originally posted by a publicist Boris Stomakhin and an image on the same subject on his profile page on VKontakte.
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During the debate, the public prosecutor asked to sentence Bubeyev to three and a half years in prison. Bubeyev claims that he is being persecuted for his beliefs, pleading not guilty.
Russia in March 2014 after the introduction of troops annexed the Ukrainian Crimea, having set up a pseudo-referendum on self-determination.
The self-proclaimed Crimean “government” said that 96.77% were in favor of the accession of Crimea to Russia.
On March 18, the Kremlin signed the so-called assession treaty, claiming Crimea and Sevastopol part of Russia.
Western countries have not recognized the annexation of Crimea and introduced a series of economic sanctions against Russia.