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Russia: Ukrainian lawyer 'forced' to resign from Russian militant case - FM's Zakharova02:20

Russia: Ukrainian lawyer 'forced' to resign from Russian militant case - FM's Zakharova

Russian Federation, Moscow
March 31, 2016 at 17:48 GMT +00:00 · Published

Speaking at a press conference in Moscow on Thursday, a spokesperson for Russia’s Foreign Ministry Maria Zakharova alleged that prior to being killed a Ukrainian lawyer was forced into resigning from a case defending Russian fighter Alexander Alexandrov.

Alexandrov was detained alongside Yevgeny Yerofeyev by pro-Kiev fighters on May 16, 2015 near the town of Schastye, where they were allegedly fighting for the militia of the self-proclaimed Lugansk and Donetsk People's Republics (LPR/LNR and DPR/DNR).

Alexandrov and Yerofeyev were due to stand trial in early March on charges of committing acts of "terrorism"; however, when Grabovsky did not appear in court and could not be found, the trial was postponed. Grabovsky’s remains were found last Friday in the Cherkasy Region with gunshot wounds. No arrests have been made so far.

According to Zakharova, Grabovsky didn’t withdraw from defending Alexandrov willingly. She said, “Yuri Grabovsky was forced to take such a step. He was forced to do it by those who interfered with his active and principled advocacy in the case of our compatriot.”

The EU, Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International all say that they will be following the case closely.

Russia: Ukrainian lawyer 'forced' to resign from Russian militant case - FM's Zakharova02:20
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Speaking at a press conference in Moscow on Thursday, a spokesperson for Russia’s Foreign Ministry Maria Zakharova alleged that prior to being killed a Ukrainian lawyer was forced into resigning from a case defending Russian fighter Alexander Alexandrov.

Alexandrov was detained alongside Yevgeny Yerofeyev by pro-Kiev fighters on May 16, 2015 near the town of Schastye, where they were allegedly fighting for the militia of the self-proclaimed Lugansk and Donetsk People's Republics (LPR/LNR and DPR/DNR).

Alexandrov and Yerofeyev were due to stand trial in early March on charges of committing acts of "terrorism"; however, when Grabovsky did not appear in court and could not be found, the trial was postponed. Grabovsky’s remains were found last Friday in the Cherkasy Region with gunshot wounds. No arrests have been made so far.

According to Zakharova, Grabovsky didn’t withdraw from defending Alexandrov willingly. She said, “Yuri Grabovsky was forced to take such a step. He was forced to do it by those who interfered with his active and principled advocacy in the case of our compatriot.”

The EU, Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International all say that they will be following the case closely.

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