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St PETERSBURG, November 14, 17:11 /ITAR-TASS/. Lawyers acting in defense of Greenpeace activists, who were arrested in September for an attempt to get on to a Russian drilling platform in the southeastern sector of the Barents Sea, have had an opportunity to meet with five of the thirty Greenpeaceniks delivered from Murmansk to St Petersburg earlier this week, a spokeswoman for Greenpeace Russia told Itar-Tass.
“Lawyers have visited five people,” she said without naming the individuals whom the legal representatives had managed to speak to.
At the time of reporting, the meeting with at least one of the detainees had been confirmed. He was Andrei Alakhverdov, 50.
“The conditions /in which the activists are kept in St Petersburg’s detention centers - Itar-Tass/ are normal and satisfactory and there’ve been no complaints against them so far.”
The escorting of the Greenpeaceniks to St Petersburg had been tiresome and difficult enough but still it was not immediately clear what kind of problems they had encountered, the spokeswoman said.
The train carrying the activists from Murmansk to St Petersburg arrived at the city’s Ladozhsky railway station last Tuesday. Officials at the regional branch of the Federal Services for the Penitentiaries said the service had not received any complaints or petitions from the Greenpeaceniks.
Dutch icebreaker-type ship The Arctic Sunrise made an unauthorized approach to the Prirazlomnaya drilling platform in the Sea of Pechora September 18 and the activists made an attempt to get over to the platform from abroad the ship but their action was aborted by the Russian border guards.
The ship was towed to the port of Murmansk after that. All the detained people were arrested for a period of two months and placed to various custody centers of the Murmansk region.
They were initially accused of sea piracy but the charges were mitigated to hooliganism later on.
At the beginning of October, an appeals court rejected a petition filed by Greenpeace lawyers to revise the pretrial restraint measure for the activists.
The defense team says it has not received the notifications on a completion of prosecution on piracy charges so far.