The Investigations department of the Railway district of Simferopol in Crimea conduct a pre-investigation check against a Crimean Tatar poetess Alie Kenzhalieva for anti-war verses published in the local newspaper “Kyrym” dated May 9 2018. The Investigative bodies have begun the check under article 354.1 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation “Rehabilitation of Nazism”. According to the Crimean Tatar, she learned about this from an investigator of the criminal investigation department of the Ministry of Internal Affairs in Simferopol.
“On June 27, he [the investigator] called the school where I work as a teacher of Russian Language and Literature, and reported that, in connection with my poems published on the 9th of May in the newspaper, a pre-investigation check is being carried out on the article on the rehabilitation of Nazism. And he demanded an explanation from me on this matter, “- says Kenzhalieva.
The next day, when the woman came to the investigator’s office, he told her that there was disrespect in poetry for the memorable dates and heroes of the war.
“The questions were: why do I not like the Victory Day, why do I feel so negative about the celebration, and what I wanted to say in this or that line of poetry,” says the Crimean Tatar.
In her turn Kenjalieva answered that for her “Victory Day is not a celebration, but is a tragedy”, and poetry is “this is a lyrical work, and everyone can see what they want in it.” “I respect the dead and do not want their death to be the occasion for the holiday,” the poet explained.
As a result, the investigator issued a written explanation from her words and dismissed. The next time he called the woman in a week – July 2nd with the goal of “asking additional questions.” Then Kenzhalieva asked the investigator what had become the reason for the pre-investigation check. The investigator explained that it is most likely that someone “grassed to Roskomnadzor”. From there, the request for verification was “lowered to the Investigation Committee,” which, in turn, turned to the criminal investigation department to find the author of the poems. The investigator also informed Kenzhalieva that the cover letter from the Investigators Commitee had information about an expert’s conclusions about her poetry, who noticed the elements of the crime envisaged by Art. 354.1 Criminal Code of the Russian Federation “Rehabilitation of Nazism”.
After that, the investigating authorities did not contact Kenzhalieva, nor did they inform her about the results of the pre-investigation check. Later, on July 26, the woman herself wrote to the investigative department for the Railway district with a request to provide information about the check up process. However, as of today, she has not received an answer.
“Since then, as we talked with the investigator the second time (July 2), he did not contact me anymore. For more than a month now I do not know what is happening with this checkup and whether a criminal case will be opened. I do not want to engage in self-censorship, but, naturally, after explaining to the investigator every line, all subsequent poems willfully and deliberately you are considering and evaluating before you write, “explains Kenzhalieva.
Taras Ibragimov, Alena Savchuk