According to Roman Martynovsky, a lawyer and expert from the Regional Center for Human Rights and the Ukrainian Helsinki Human Rights Union, 2,200 prisoners were transferred from Crimea to Russia. He said this during an interview with Hromadske Radio.
“Today, we have received reliable information confirming the fact that 2,200 prisoners were transferred from Crimea to Russia to serve their sentences. However, according to unconfirmed reports, that number could be as high as 7,000,” Martynovsky said.
According to him, there are several reasons for this.
“For example, there are no women’s prisons in Crimea. There are also issues relating to inmates who are serving a life sentence and for those who were sentenced to serve their time in a strict-regime prison,” he explained.
“We have also recorded a number of cases where prisoners are sent to Russia for refusing to accept Russian citizenship and to sign the documents to obtain Russian passports,” he added.
He added that prisoners who do not accept Russian citizenship are then more likely to return to Ukraine to serve their sentence.
Russia had previously reported that Ukraine does not accept prisoners from Crimea.
However, the Ukrainian Ministry of Justice disagreed with this and said that Ukraine is willing to take prisoners from Crimea. The Ministry said that it is actually Russia who opposes these transfers.