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Trial of Russian citizens Yerofeyev and Alexandrov opens in Kiev

November 03, 2015, 9:59 UTC+3 KIEV
The two men are facing penalties of up to life imprisonment for allegedly waging an "aggressive war" against Ukraine
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© EPA/ROMAN PILIPEY

KIEV, November 3. /TASS/. The trial of Russian nationals Alexander Alexandrov and Yevgeny Yerofeyev gets underway in Kiev on Tuesday.

The two men are charged with waging an "aggressive war" against Ukraine, "the unauthorized movement of weapons, assistance to a terrorist organization and commission of a terrorist attack, which led to deaths of Ukrainian military personnel." They are facing penalties of up to life imprisonment.

Alexandrov and Yerofeyev were detained by the Ukrainian military on May 16 in the armed conflict area in the Donbas region. The Ukrainian authorities claim they are Russian servicemen. The Russian Defense Ministry said on May 18 that "Russian nationals Alexandrov and Yerofeyev were not active-duty servicemen at the time of their detention."

During the previous hearings Yerofeyev told a court in Kiev about the pressure and threats against him on the part of investigators. When asked whether someone was threatening or mistreating him, Yerofeyev answered, "There were threats, pressure. They want us to provide testimony."

Yerofeyev’s lawyer Oksana Sokolovskaya was threatened as well. She admitted that "the prosecutor’s office treated her toughly," accusing her of "high treason."

 

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