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Russias Crimean Political Prisoners: Rustem Vaitov

09.08.16 | Halya Coynash

Rustem Vaitov, a recognized political prisoner, is facing a 10-year sentence in a trial which Russia is using as part of its policy of intimidation and terror in occupied Crimea

Crimean Tatar Rustem Vaitov turned 30 on July 26. It was his second birthday in captivity, first in Russian-occupied Crimea, now in Rostov where he and three other Crimean Muslims are facing long sentences on concocted charges. All four men have been recognized by the authoritative Memorial Human Rights Centre as political prisoners. None expects justice from a Russian court, and there are sadly grounds for such pessimism.

Rustem is an ecologist by profession, but was working as a builder. According to journalist Anton Naumlyuk who met with his family in Orlinoye, near Sevastopol, the young man was involved in human rights work.

His wife Aliye Padosheva was expecting their first child in January 2015 when her husband was arrested.

Naumlyuk and a friend took a video of all the four mens families and managed, despite obstruction from a court guard, to show it to them during a break in the court proceedings. This would have been one of the only times Vaitov has seen his infant daughter.

The conditions in Rostov are marginally better than those in the Crimean SIZO or remand prison, but still very bad. The Ukrainian consul has been attending all hearings, but has thus far, in breach of international law, been refused permission to see the men who all remain Ukrainian nationals.

Rustem Vaitov is facing a 10-year sentence.

There is no evidence that he was involved, as alleged, in the Hizb-ut-Tahrir organization, which is legal in Ukraine and most countries.

Russia has never provided any reasonable explanation for declaring an organization which is not known to have committed or advocated terrorist acts anywhere in the world.

Vaitov, Zeitullayev, Primov and Saifullayev have been declared political prisoners by the renowned Memorial Human Rights Centre.

Please see and share (brief) information about the case here:

Terror on a Conveyor Belt in Russian-occupied Crimea


Letters or postcards need to be in Russian, and should not contain any discussion of the cases or politics generally.

If it is a problem to write in Russian, even copy-pasting the following will send an important message to the men themselves and to Russia that they are not forgotten.


, , .


[Hello, I wish you good health, courage and patience and hope that you will soon be released. You are not forgotten.

Address (just copy-paste the address, with the name and year of birth of the person you are writing to).

Rustem Vaitov

344010, , . --, . , 219 -1

, 1986 . .

Ruslan Zeitullayev

344010, , --, . , 219 -1.

, , 1985 ..

Nuri Primov

344010, , --, . , 219 -1.


Ferat Saifullayev

344010, , --, . , 219 -1.

, , 1983 . .

see also:
Russias Crimean Political Prisoners - Ferat Saifullayev
Terror on a Conveyor Belt in Russian-occupied Crimea
Jailed Crimean human rights activist isolated as dangerous prisoner
Russia warned it is occupying Crimea, must stop persecuting Crimean Muslims
When Abduction Turns to FSB Search in Russian-occupied Crimea
Russian FSB jails Crimean Muslims, then terrorizes their children
Terrorist charges to silence Crimean Tatar Human Rights Activist
Crimea is not a closed subject, Putin. Its an open wound.
Russias Conveyor Belt of Repression in Occupied Crimea
Crimean Muslims face 15-year Sentences for Invented Terrorism
A Voice in Europe for the Crimean Tatars as Unrelenting Terror Continues