Ukrainian Anti-War Political Prisoner Eduard Kovalenko Appealed to International Organisations for Support

Translated by Ollie Richardson & Angelina Siard


The public figure Eduard Kovalenko, convicted under Article 114-1 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine – “Preventing the lawful activity of the Armed Forces of Ukraine and other military formations” – sent an open letter to international human rights organisations with a request to support him during the consideration of the appeal on his case in the Supreme Court.

As a reminder, on August 13th 2018 Kovalenko went on hunger strike and demanded from the authorities to release him from custody and to completely acquit him and other political prisoners, defendants, and convicts after the events of 2014. 100 days later, in connection with his deteriorating health, he switched to partial starvation.

In the open letter of Kovalenko he asks international human rights organisations to support him and also listed a number of demands addressed to the Ukrainian authorities, after the implementation of which he will stop a hunger strike. Besides the aforementioned, the political prisoner also demanded the implementation of the Minsk Agreements, the end of the repression and persecution of persons who freely express their political opinion, and citizen participation in peaceful assemblies in accordance with the European Convention on Human Rights and democratic principles of civilised mankind around the whole world.

As the human rights activists of Uspishna Varta earlier reported on Telegram, in January 2015 Eduard Kovalenko opposed mobilisation in Ukraine. On January 26th 2015 the SBU thus initiated a criminal case under Article 114-1 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine. More than two years later, in May 2017, the court sentenced Kovalenko to five years of imprisonment, having arrested and jailed him. At this stage Eduard Kovalenko is challenging the pronounced sentence in the Supreme Court.

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Consideration in the Supreme Court of the appeal against his sentence was scheduled for February 26th, 2019.

Eduard Kovalenko’s case is being continuously monitored by the “Uspishna Varta” human rights platform.

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