Concerns grow for Oleg Sentsov as hunger strike enters second month

Screen | 6/12/2018 | Staff
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Concerns are growing for Ukrainian director Oleg Sentsov as his hunger strike protesting his imprisonment and that of another 64 Ukrainian political prisoners in Russia enters its second month.

The filmmaker has been on hunger strike since May 14 and has said he will only start eating again if he and all the Ukrainian political prisoners are released.

Hospital - Days - Point - Risks - Increase

“We know he is being checked in a civilian hospital. But it is [at] around 30 days, the point at which he is currently, that the risks increase significantly,” said producer and European Film Academy deputy chairman Mike Downey, who is campaigning to keep Sentsov’s plight in the spotlight.

“Around this point he will have lost between 18 and 20 percent of his body weight, meaning he should be hospitalised but we don’t know what the Russian authorities are planning. Russian law permits force-feeding of strikers whose lives are in danger… but after around 50 days the risks become acute even with force-feeding.”

Sentsov - Lawyer - Dmitry - Dinze - News

Sentsov’s lawyer Dmitry Dinze told French news agency AFP over the weekend that Sentsov had lost eight kilos so far and had agreed to be put on a glucose drip but had been told by doctors that “irreversible consequences” of his hunger strike would soon kick in.

The director was originally arrested in his home in the Crimea by Russian security forces in May 2014, shortly after Russian annexed the region from Ukraine earlier that year. He was then sentenced by a military court in 2015 to a 20-year prison sentence on terrorism charges he strongly refutes.

Sentsov - Prisoners - Conflict - Russia - Ukraine

Sentsov is among some 70 political prisoners caught up in the conflict between Russia and Ukraine over the contested region of Crimea.

World Cup appeals

Calls - Russia - Director - Prisoners - Eve

Calls for Russia to release the director and the other Ukrainian political prisoners have been multiplying on the eve of the World Cup kick-off...
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