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The Russian Federal Penitentiary Service (FSIN) didn’t allow Ukrainian journalist Semena, to leave Crimea for treatment in Ukraine

The Russian Federal Penitentiary Service didn’t allow Ukrainian journalist Nikolay Semena to leave Crimea for treatment at a cardiology clinic in Kiev. “OVD-Info” writes about this, quoting Emil Kurbedinov, the journalist’s lawyer.

The newspaper also reports that Semena might be able to go to Ukraine in July 2019. “It turns out that only in July, half of the term of the suspended sentence expires. He would be then eligible for parole. If his appeal for a release on parole is approved, which is processed through the court, then he will be allowed to safely leave,” Kurbedinov said.

On September 22, 2017, the court in Simferopol delivered the journalist a suspended sentence for two and a half years’ imprisonment. He was found guilty of publicly calling for violation of Russian territorial integrity (Art. 280.1 of the Criminal Code). Semena was sentenced to a three year probationary period and he was banned from engaging in public activity for the same period.

The reason for initiating of criminal proceedings was Semena’s article, “Blockade: A Necessary First Step towards the Liberation of Crimea” published on the “Krym.Realii” website. The investigation considered this to be a call made by the journalist for the violation of Russian territorial integrity.

Semena himself claims that in his writing he exercised the right of “freedom of expression.” At the end of 2017, the Supreme Court of Crimea reduced Semena’s prohibition period for engaging in public activities from three to two years.