[Marxism] The Disturbing Tally of Activists and Journalists Tortured or Killed in Ukraine - The Wire

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Sat Apr 26 08:22:34 MDT 2014


Below is a just partial list of some of those who have disappeared or 
been injured or killed since the crisis began. Taken together, they 
paint a rather frightening picture of the situation on the ground.
Yevgeny Polozhy

Polozhy, editor-in-chief of the independent news site Panorama, was 
reportedly beaten outside his home by two assailants earlier this month. 
The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) reported on April 17 that he 
had been hospitalized following the attack, Panorama catalogued his 
injuries, noting that he had suffered a broken skull, concussion, 
dislocated elbow and multiple facial bruises.
Andrei Schekun and Anatoly Kovalsky

The two political activists were taken by armed men in Crimea in March, 
and released after 11 days. Schekun told Human Rights Watch (HRW) that 
he had been tortured, according to the rights organization:

     A group of men in camouflage detained them at the Simferopol train 
station. The men held them for 11 days, interrogated and beat them, and 
on March 20 handed them over to Ukrainian military officers at the 
Chongar checkpoint, on Crimea’s northern administrative border. Kovalsky 
and Schekun said their captors claimed they were members of Crimea’s 
“self-defense” units.

Ukraine-based news site Podrobnosti (translation via the Institute for 
War and Peace Reporting) reported further on the incident, adding that 
Schekun and Kovalsky weren't the only ones held:

     Two of those released, Andrey Schekun and Yury Shevchenko, were 
taken to hospital. As part of the torture, they were shot with 
non-lethal firearms and the bullets are lodged in their torsos and legs. 
Schekun, Kovalsky, Shevchenko and the other captives were held in a 
basement of the military commandant’s office in Simferopol.

Vasiliy Lyutiy

The well-known Ukrainian musician was beaten and tied to a tree after 
participating in pro-Ukraine rally earlier this week, according to 
witnesses. The assault was captured on video and uploaded to YouTube, as 
his assailants emptied his pocket and displayed his possession to the 
camera, before turn them over to plainclothes policemen. He is still in 

According to the site Maidantranslations.com, the Ukrainian Kobzar 
(bard) community issued a statement on the attack, saying:

     The Kobzar community of Ukraine is deeply worried about the fate of 
one of their brothers, the Kobzar and community activist Vasyl Liutyi. 
He was the emcee/leader of the rally for united Ukraine in the town of 
Rubizhne in Luhansk oblast, in eastern Ukraine. We have learned that on 
April 21, during a rally in support of a united Ukraine in the town of 
Rubizhne, Liutyi was severely beaten and then arrested. During his 
arrest, he was tortured.

The association added that they"condemn the excesses of Russian 
chauvinists and protest against the inaction of the law enforcement 
authorities," and are demanding their fellow musician's release.
Volodymyr Rybak

The local Ukrainian politician, along with another unidentified man, was 
found dead after disappearing in April. It appeared that he been 
tortured before being thrown into a river, alive, to drown. According to 
video footage, he was assaulted by a pro-Russian crowd before he 
disappeared, per Reuters:

     The footage from April 17 on local news site gorlovka.ua shows 
angry scenes outside the town hall of Horlivka, between the separatist 
flashpoint cities of Donetsk and Slaviansk, as Rybak is manhandled by 
several men, among them a masked man in camouflage, while other people 
hurl abuse.

Ukrainian President Oleksandr Turchynov said Rybak and the other man 
were "brutally tortured by pro-Russian" militants.

Reshat Ametov

The 39-year-old father of three disappeared after participating in a 
peaceful protest against pro-Russia separatists in Crimea in March, and 
was later found dead. Ametov identified as a Crimean Tatar, a Sunni 
Muslim minority that has been historically discriminated against by 
Russia, and was not in favor of the annexation. According to local 
media, Ametov's body showed signs that he had been killed violently. The 
Huffington Post UK reported at the time that "the marks on his body 
indicate Ametov may have been tortured before his death, with 
transparent tape wrapped around his head and hands."

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