Investigate Death Of Peaceful Protestor

unmarked military men

Target: Mr. Sergey Valeryevich Aksyonov

Goal: Open investigation into enforced disappearance and killing of peaceful protestor

After the recent disappearance and killing of Reshat Ametov in Simferopol, Crimean authorities should investigate Crimea immediately. Those responsible should be brought to justice. Mr. Ametov is a Crimean Tatar – a group of Turkic people living in Ukraine – who lived in the Simferopol region. The Tatars have long suffered under Russian control in the past and this new development could signal an increase in violence against this ethnic minority. Crimean authorities must crack down on those responsible for Reshat Ametov’s murder so that similar crimes are not committed.

Reshat Ametov’s relatives have said that he was last seen during a protest in early March on Lenin Square in Simferopol. Three men in military-style jackets led him away, according to eyewitness reports. Efforts by family to find him were unsuccessful, including a complaint to the local police. Eventually, the police found the body of Reshat Ametov bearing signs of “a violent death”. No one has been arrested and the investigation has gone nowhere.

Relatives of Reshat Ametov have yet been able to retrieve his body. Authorities have no explanation as to why, and his death certificate is still not available. This disappearance is a troubling trend, illustrating the lawlessness that has overtaken Crimea since the invasion by Russian soldiers. An investigation must be opened and those responsible punished to set the example for potential ‘copy-cat’ killers. 


Dear Mr. Sergey Valeryevich Aksyonov,

The recent enforced disappearance and killing of Reshat Ametov in Simferopol is extremely disturbing and telling of the lawlessness that has been pervasive since the invasion of Crimea by Russia. Witnesses have stated that Mr. Ametov was led away from an anti-Russia Federation protest in early March. Next time he was seen, he was dead and his family states his body showed signs of ‘violent death’.

I ask that you immediately open an impartial investigation into Mr. Ametov’s death and bring those responsible to justice. By doing so your government will be able to prevent similar events from occurring. I also ask that you increase efforts to disarm any militias or other armed factions not currently under your government’s control. Doing so will show the international community that you are actually serious in protecting all your citizens.


[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: Elizabeth Arrott via Wikipedia Commons

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