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Russian national Mefedov taken to Odessa’s detention center instead of being released

December 28, 2017, 3:37 UTC+3 KIEV

Yevgeny Mefedov’s lawyer Valentin Rybin told TASS on December 14 that Odessa’s district court had changed his pre-trial restriction from custody to home arrest

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KIEV, December 28. /TASS/. Russian national Yevgeny Mefedov who was not released by Kiev during Wednesday’s prisoner exchange with Donbass’ self-proclaimed republics will be taken back to a detention center in Odessa, director of Ukraine’s Institute of Legal Policy and Social Protection Elena Berezhnaya said on Thursday.

Yevgeny Mefedov has been taken back to Odessa’s detention center. Others, whose pre-trial restrictions were changed before the swap, are to be taken to court to put into custody again," she wrote on her Facebook account. According to Berezhnaya, the Ukrainian side is doing this just about faster that international institutions that took part in the organization of Wednesday’s prisoner exchange could react.

Mefedov’s lawyer Valentin Rybin told TASS on December 14 that Odessa’s district court had changed his pre-trial restriction from custody to home arrest. He also said that Mefedov had been put on exchange list.

On Wednesday, Berezhnaya said that the Ukrainian side had not released 14 Russian nationals whose names were on the exchange lists, despite the fact that they had not objected against the swap.

Medvedchuk said that some of the people had been released from prisons earlier and so they could not participate in the exchange, while some had refused to return to the self-proclaimed republics of Donbass. Besides, Russian citizens were crossed off the list as they, as he claimed, could be handed over only through diplomatic channels in line with the current international convention.

Along with a number of other anti-maidan [the term ‘maidan’ was coined after Kiev’s central Independence Square, or Maidan Nezalezhnosti, to refer to anti-government riots] activists, Mefedov was accused of instigating riots in Odessa in May 2014, when 48 people died in fire at the local Trade Unions House. On September 18, a court in the town of Chernomorsk, Odessa region, found all anti-maidan activists, including Mefedov, not guilty. However immediately after the verdict was pronounced, Ukraine’s Security Service brought further charges against Mefedov, accusing him of infringing upon Ukraine’s territorial integrity.

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