Russia-Ukraine war: Moscow politician gets 7 years for denouncing war
A Moscow councillor has reportedly received the first full prison sentence under new legislation targeting dissent after speaking out against Russia’s conflict in Ukraine. He was given a seven-year prison sentence.
After being caught on camera criticising the invasion during a city council meeting in April, Alexei Gorinov, 60, was taken into custody.
Anyone who promotes “false news” about the military could spend up to 15 years in prison under the post-invasion rule.
It is forbidden for Russians to refer to the invasion as a war.
According to human rights campaigner Pavel Chikov, the first prison sentence under the new law was given to Gorinov. Judges have only imposed fines or deferred sentences thus far.
The court found that he had committed his crime “based on political animosity” and had deceived the Russian people in order to make them “feel anxious and fearful” about the military operation.
In late April, more than a month after giving a speech at a district meeting in Moscow’s Krasnoselsky neighbourhood, the opposition councillor was taken into custody.
When children were dying in Ukraine, Gorinov objected to the concept of holding a children’s drawing competition. He had also attempted to call for a moment of silence to honour the victims before the council meeting began.
In court on Friday, activists and journalists who were a present claim that Gorinov informed the judge that Russia had fought all the wars it could in the 20th century.
Tatiana Stanovaya, a political analyst from Russia, claimed it was obvious that the government was issuing a warning to “dissenters.” According to the authorities, using the word “war” was sabotage, she stated. However, it was viewed as virtual terrorism when paired with political action, like Gorinov’s, and would result in a lengthy prison sentence.
Andrei Pivovarov, a well-known pro-democracy activist who was taken off a plane as it was about to take off from St. Petersburg in May, is also the target of Russian prosecutors who are asking for a lengthy prison sentence. His attorney claimed that he was charged with leading the unfavourable organisation Open Russia.