Location Ukraine Ukraine

Detention in Ukraine as a kind of torture

In 2014, during the civil war in the Donbas, the Kiev controlled troops seized the head of the city of Slavyansk, who by will of circumstances worked under the rule of the Donetsk People’s Republic. Her name is Nelya Shtepa. Since then, Shtepa is under arrest. She is charged with cooperation with terrorists, but the investigation has so far failed to prove her guilt in court.
On August 30, Shtepa handed over a letter in which she complained about the intolerable conditions of detention. She was transferred to a cell where the floors and walls are black with dampness, 14 people are kept in the cell. All of them smoke, and the hoods are not in the room. The floors in the chamber are sandy-earthy, cockroaches and mice run around. She also writes that it stinks in the cell from the next landfill. «Not only domestic waste is taken to this landfill, but also the feces from pigs that are grown in an institution, but not for prisoners.» She added that in the cell opposite there are 4 people with an open form of tuberculosis. «And we breathe the same air together with them.» «Constantly with X-rays, tuberculosis forms are found in prisoners».
According to the lawyer in this cell there is no running water and it is very hot. During her stay under arrest Stepa had diabetes mellitus and hypertension. However, the administration of the detention center does not provide her with medical assistance and refuses to comply with the court’s decision, which ordered to provide her with acceptable conditions of detention.

Ukrainian left blogger Andrey Manchuk comments Shtepa’s cry: her case demonstrates lawlessness of current Ukrainian authorities. They have no clear evidence of her guilty and prefer to slowly kill her in prison instead of immediate liberation. Manchuk also stresses complete indifference of Ukrainian feminist movement to tortures of the Shtepa. Stepa is not only arrested official but in the same time she is a woman. The blogger notes the phenomenon is typical for Ukrainian professional feminists.  They have not protested while opposition journalist Glishchinskaya was pregnant in custody and needed medical support, they ignored some non resonant cases too. The main reason is nationalist complexes spread like a kind of illness in Ukrainian feminist circles, Manchuk concludes.

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