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Ukrainian Who Criticized Putin Is Sentenced to Four Years For ‘Extremism’

via NBC
This article was originally published at StateOfUnion.org. Publications approved for syndication have permission to republish this article, such as Microsoft News, Yahoo News, Newsbreak, UltimateNewswire and others. To learn more about syndication opportunities, visit About Us.

A Moscow court sentenced former Ukrainian separatist leader Igor Girkin to four years in prison for extremism.

Girkin, also known as Strelkov, was a prominent figure in the Russian-backed separatist movement in Ukraine’s Donetsk region in 2014.

He was convicted in absentia in the Netherlands for his role in the downing of a Malaysian passenger airliner.

Girkin later became a nationalist commentator and activist, criticizing Russian authorities and calling Putin a “nonentity.”

His arrest and conviction highlight the Russian government’s sensitivity to criticism and opposition, especially after the full-scale invasion of Ukraine in 2022, which led to the passage of laws criminalizing statements that discredit the Russian military.

Two protesters calling for Girkin’s release were reportedly detained by police outside the court building.

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