SBU removes ban on Yury Barabash and Andriy Yurov
Andrei Yurov Yury Barabash
The Security Service, now headed by Valentyn Nalyvaichenko, has withdrawn its ban on entry to Ukraine of photographer Yury Barabash and human rights activist, Andrei Yurov, both Russian nationals.
On Feb 8, Russian human rights activist, Andrei Yurov was stopped from entering Ukraine and sent back to Moscow. The member of the presidential Human Rights Council and chair of the Permanent Commission on Human Rights Issues Abroad was detained in Boryspil Airport. He told Deutsche Welle that an SBU [Security Service] lieutenant with the surname Som handed him a paper which stated that an authorized body had declared him persona non grata in Ukraine. It said that he was entitled to appeal the decision. Verbally, he was told that the SBU had placed him on a blacklist, however his request for written confirmation of such a list was turned down
On July 15, 2013, Yury Barabash, photographer and Russian national, working for a Ukrainian publishing company in Ukraine, was removed from the train carrying him back to Ukraine from Russia. The SBU claims against him related to the demonstrations on May 18, and they claimed that he had taken part in confrontation.
Another journalist, however, Oleh Shpak from the TV channel “New Odessa”, provided video footage which showed clearly that Yury Barabash did not take part in any of the scuffles and was simply photographing the event.
A Channel 5 journalist Olha Snitsarchuj and her Komersant Ukraine photographer husband Vlad Sodel first began photographing the scuffle on 18 May. Snitsarchuk was attacked with the police standing there and doing nothing. Her assailants were not mentions of VO Svoboda, and appear to have been hired as “guards” for the “antifascist” events.
Yury Barabash was an active critic of the Yanukovych regime. He often photographed street protests and was among the people detained during a demonstration on Independence Square to mark the 8th anniversary of the Orange Revolution.