I would like to express my deep concern regarding the conviction and ongoing imprisonment of Sergey Krivov. He was arrested on 18 October 2012 while participating, peacefully, in a picket in defence of the Bolotnaya protesters. He was charged with “participation in mass riots”(Article 212(2) of the
Russian criminal Code) and “violence against a police officer”(Article 318 of the Russian Criminal Code) in connection with his participation in the May 6th protest at the Boltnaya Square in Moscow. He was sentenced to 4 years imprisonment and is currently in detention centre IK-6, near Klintsy.
While acknowledging that isolated incidents of occasionally serious violence did take place in Bolotnaya Square on 6 May 2012, Amnesty International considers that these did not amount to a mass riot within the meaning of Russian law, or any ordinary understanding of the term. Amnesty International considers the majority of the violence that took place to have been at the hands of the police or to have resulted from the failure by the police to effectively manage the demonstration. Arrangements agreed with the protest organisers were also not observed. The qualification as a “mass riot” under Russian law appears to be motivated by political considerations and the charges of “participation in mass riots” should have been dropped against all of the accused. Having studied the available materials, Amnesty international believes that Sergey Krivov did not engage in any violent act punishable under Article 318 of the Criminal Code.
Amnesty International, therefore, believes that Sergey Krivov is a prisoner of conscience imprisoned solely for peacefully exercising his right to freedom of expression and assembly and thus should be released immediately and unconditionally. While he is still in custody, I am calling on you to ensure he is given any medical care he may require.
Thank you for considering my request.
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