The European Union has strongly condemned the behaviour of Russian occupation troops and their proxies who are detaining, abducting or kidnapping Ukrainian journalists, civil society activists, local officials and other civilians in Ukrainian territories temporarily under the illegal and illegitimate control by the Russian Armed Forces.
According to a statement by the European External Action Service (EEAS), “these worrying developments often concern volunteers trying to help their communities with food, medicines and water, as well as journalists exposing the truth on the developments on the ground.” The most prominent cases, the statement says, include Oleg Baturin, editor of the media outlet ‘Novy Den’, and ‘Hromadske’ journalist Victoria Roshchyna, as well as activists Olha Haisumova and Serhiy Tsyhipa, who have gone missing over the past days and weeks.
“The Russian occupiers continue with their deplorable tactic of abducting representatives of the municipal and regional administrations, including mayor of Dniprorudny Yevgen Matveyev, chair of the Melitopol District Council Sergiy Pryima, Mayor of Ivankiv Tetiana Svyrydenko, Deputy Head of the Military-Civilian Administration of Shchastia Volodymyr Tiurin, Secretary of the Skadovsk City Council Yuriy Paliukh, and emergency response staff member Oleksiy Danchenko,” says the statement.
The EU demanded the immediate release of all Ukrainian citizens illegally detained by the Russian occupation forces and reiterated its call on Russia to establish unhindered humanitarian access to Ukraine immediately.
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