Ukrainian director Oleg Sentsov, won the Polish prize Pro Dignitate Humana. This was announced on October 23 by the Polish Foreign Minister Jacek Czaputovich, during a meeting with his Ukrainian counterpart Pavel Klimkin.
According to Chaputovich, Poland will support Ukraine in counteracting Russian aggression and “does not recognize the illegal annexation of Crimea by Russia”.
The Pro Dignitate Humana Prize was founded in the Polish Ministry of Foreign Affairs in 2012. It is awarded for the activities in defense of the rights of people undergoing persecution and repression, as well as for a strong position in the protection of human rights and respect for human dignity. The award provides for a reward of 100 thousand zlotys, which the laureate can send to humanitarian projects.
On October 5th, Russian jailers stated that Sentsov “agreed by writing for a meal” after 145 days of a hunger strike demanding the release of all Ukrainian political prisoners who are in Russian prisons.
Later it became known that Sentsov would stop the hunger strike on October 6. He called it “a forced measure because of the threat of force-feeding.” Amnesty International, said that the forced feeding is a torture.
Lawyer Dmitry Dinze and Sentsova’s sister, Natalya Kaplan reported, that the liver of the convicted director began to decompose and that his kidneys might stop working. According to Russian doctors, Sentsov may not survive the way out of the hunger strike.
Sentsov and the Crimean anarchist Alexander Kolchenko were detained by the representatives of the Russian special services in Crimea, in May 2014, on charges of organizing terrorist attacks on the peninsula. In August 2015, the North Caucasian District Military Court in Rostov-on-Don, sentenced Sentsov to 20 years in a strict regime colony, on charges of terrorist activities in the Crimea. Kolchenko received 10 years in prison. Both did not admit their guilt.
The human rights center “Memorial” introduced Sentsov and Kolchenko to the list of political prisoners. The petition at the White House website with a call to save Oleg Sentsov convicted in Russia was signed by more than 100 thousand people.