May 30, 2016

Crimean Tatars: Mejlis Ban Appeal to be Reviewed by Russian Supreme Court

Following the self-proclaimed Crimean Supreme Court’s ruling banning the Crimean Tatar Mejlis as an ‘extremist organisation’, an appeal has now been filed with the Russian Supreme Court against this decision. The appeal was filed on 25 May 2016, however the date of the hearing has yet to be set. The appeal follows a European Parliament resolution passed on 12 May 2016 which condemned the human rights violations occurring in the occupied peninsula, including the decision to close down the Mejlis representative body, the only entity to represent Crimean Tatar interests, under false accusations of extremism and even terrorism.


Below is an article published by the Russian Legal Information Agency:

An appeal against the Crimean Supreme Court’s ruling over ban of Crimean Tatar Majlis has been filed with the Russian Supreme Court, Majlis’s lawyer Jemil Temishev told RAPSI on Friday.

“The appeal was filed on May 25. Hearings will be held in the Supreme Court of the Russian Federation,” Temishev said.

The date of hearing has not been set yet.

On April 26, the Supreme Court of Crimea granted a lawsuit filed by republic’s Prosecutor Natalia Poklonskaya and banned the Majlis of Crimean Tatars as extremist organization.

Poklonskaya stated that members of the Majlis of Crimean Tatars public association are focused on anti-Russian activity.  According to Prosecutor, the Majlis leaders, Refat Chubarov and Mustafa Dzhemilev, have organized food and energy blockade of the peninsula. They allegedly cooperate with various terrorist organizations as well.

After Crimea reunited with Russia in 2014, both Dzhemilev and Chubarov were banned from entering the republic for five years. The regional officials claim that the Tatar leaders’ activity incited inter-ethnic hatred.

In May 2015, a criminal case has been opened in Crimea against Refat Chubarov over public calls for extremist activity.

Chubarov has been president of the World Congress of Crimean Tatars since 2009. In November 2013, he replaced Mustafa Dzhemilev as head of Crimean Tatar Majlis (parliament), an organization not registered under Russian law.