Tuesday, 5 May 2015
Free Alexandr Koltchenko! (Russia)
Crimean Antifascist militant, kidnapped and detained by the Russian State
Aleandr Koltchenko is a student and trade union militant. He was also working as postman to pay for his university studies. He is very active in supporting the right to organise, to create and lead political, ecological, labour organisations. He is one among the many men and women that fight against the Extreme Right, whether Russian, Ukrainian, or other… Because he fights corruption and defends equal right s for all, A Koltchenko is the target of Russian and Ukrainian oligarchies. A Koltchenko struggles for the right of each people to decide his own future.
Alexandr Koltchenko has been known for several years in Crimea for his antifascist, trade union, anarchist and ecological commitments. In 2009, he had already been the victim of a knife attack by a fascist mob for having issued a film on the murder of Crimean independent journalist Anastasia Baburova. He kept on leading his Human Rights actions, participating as such in the distinctly antifascist in Maidan Square, that led to the ousting of Ukrainian president Yanukovich, whose clan was robbing the country and exploiting its population.
During the Russian military intervention, Alexandr Koltchenko organized non-violent protest actions alongside the Tatar, Ukrainian and Russian citizens in protest against the military occupation who falsified the referendum. Some days before these demonstrations, the Russian police (FSB) kidnapped several organisers of the popular resistance. This was the case of Alexandr Koltchenko, on the 16th of May 2014.
Along with 3 other abducted people he was accused of organising a terrorist group tied to the Ukrainian extreme-right. This is followed by a litany of delirious accusations: Koltchenko would have masterminded the explosions that went off near the statue of Lenin in Simferopol, on May 8 and 9 ; sabotaged rail lines, attempted to set fire to the Russian Unity, and Crimean Russian community precincts (April 18, May14).
Alexandr Koltchenko is an antifascist militant that the Russian police wants to pass off as a fascist. Alexandre Koltchenko is a man that considers himself a Ukrainian citizen, that the Russian police intends to try as a Russian citizen. He is detained in draconian conditions, his lawyers are refused elementary rights to defend him, and he is under the threat of of 15 to 20 years in a labour camp.
Koltchenko’s situation is symbolic of the type of repression taking place in that part of the world. But his case is far from being the only one. Through Alexandr Koltchenko’s, we are defending everyone’s democratic freedoms. We are, as he is, making a stand against those that would restrain these freedoms.
This 1st of May, all of our civil rights, labour and political organisations call for a broad movement of international solidarity for Koltchenko’s immediate liberation, for democratic liberties in all countries.
We denounce the kidnapping and detention of A Koltchenko by the Russian authorities, demand his immediate liberation, and for the Ukrainian government to demand likewise in an explicit way.
After last April’s action week (gatherings in Biarritz, Paris, Strasburg, Marseille, Kiev, Minsk, Berlin, Bremen, Tunis) we are launching a subscription campaign to finance legal expenses and help support committees to conduct the solidarity campaign in both Russia and Ukraine.
Contributions should be addressed to : Solidaires (please write Koltchenko on the back of the cheque), 144 Boulevard de la Villette, 75019 Paris France.
Signatories : Ligue des Droits de l’Homme, Fédération Internationale des ligues des Droits de l’Homme, Groupe de résistance aux répressions en Russie, Ukraine Action, Association des Étudiants Ukrainiens en France, Russie-Libertés, CEDETIM - Initiatives Pour un Autre Monde - Assemblée Européenne des Citoyens, Cosmopolitan Project Foundation, Action antifasciste Paris-Banlieue, Collectif Antifasciste Paris Banlieue, Mémorial 98, Union syndicale Solidaires, CNT-f, CNT-SO, Emancipation, FSU, FSU 03, CGT Correcteurs, Sud éducation, Alternative Libertaire, Ensemble ! (membre du Front de gauche), L’Insurgé, NPA, Fédération Anarchiste