MOSCOW, November 9 (Itar-Tass) — Russian State Duma Speaker Boris Gryzlov will discuss with his colleagues at a session of the CIS Interparliamentary Assembly on Wednesday the situation with the Russian pilot sentenced to 8.5 years in prison in Tajikistan, United Russia Party’s official Yuri Shuvalov told reporters.
“The verdict of Tajik court against Russian national Vladimir Sadovnichy certainly does not contribute to normal relations between our countries,” said Shuvalov, who is deputy secretary of the presidium of the party’s General Council.
“Russia will seek that Vladimir Sadovnichy gets an opportunity to return home as soon as possible,” he confirmed. “We have all grounds to believe that he is not guilty of what he was accused, and we believe the investigation of the incident with the landing in Kurgan-Tyube could have been more objective,” he stressed.
Shuvalov believes that “the resource of interparliamentary diplomacy can be used for the settlement of that problem that aggravates relations between Russia and Tajikistan”.
“State Duma chairman Boris Gryzlov, who takes part on Wednesday in a session of the Council of the CIS Interparliamentary Assembly in St. Petersburg will meet with his colleagues in the Interparliamentary Assembly and will give instructions to parliamentarians supervising cooperation with Tajik partners,” he noted.
On Tuesday, the Tajik court sentenced pilots of the Russian air carrier Rolkan Investments Ltd – Vladimir Sadovnichy and Alexei Rudenko (Estonian national) – to 10.5 years in a strict regime colony. Their sentence was reduced to 8.5 years under the presidential amnesty.
The pilots were found guilty of violating the rules of international flights, illegal border crossing and contraband.
The pilots were apprehended in March 2011. They pleaded not guilty.