03.06.2014 00:40Journalists of the Journalistic Investigation Center Beaten by “Self-Defense” in Simferopol ~~

Journalist and editor of the Journalistic Investigation Centre Sergei Mokrushin was detained by the “self-defence” and had been transported to Simferopol’s municipal hospital no.6. He is suspected of fractured ribs and contusion of internal organs, as Sergei Mokrushin informed the editors office by phone.

He said he was being transported in an ambulance to a traumatology centre accompanied by the police.  According to Mokrushin, he and Melnikov were detained by the “self-defence” and brought to their head-quarters. The interrogation and beating was witnessed by Aleksander Yuryev – former member of the community board at the Council of Ministers, and Anatoliy Petrov – member of Simferopol City Council.   Mokrushin noted that, although they saw how the journalists were tortured, they didn’t interfere.

According to the journalist, he was beaten in the kidneys, and Vladlen Melnikov was hit on the head with glass. There telephones were taken and “examined” by the “self-defence”. Moreover, representatives of the “self-defence” visited the journalists’ social network pages. “They stopped beating us as soon as the police arrived. They spent two hours in the self-defence head-quarters with us, and it was only after my persuasion that the “self-defence” called for an ambulance. At the moment I’m being transported to municipal hospital no.6, and Vlad — to the Central Regional Department of Internal Affairs,” Mokrushin said.

The two employees of the Journalistic Investigation Centre were detained in Simferopol at 8 PM. Journalist and editor Sergei Mokrushin and director Vladlen Melnikov were detained by representatives of the “self-defence” in Sevastopol St. near the Trade Union House, where the editors office of the Journalistic Investigation Centre is located. Mokrishin and Melnikov were kept in a so-called self defence head-quarter in the former office of the Communist Party in 26 Kirova St. According to the self-defence, the journalists were allegedly harming the reputation of and giving offence to high ranking officials of the Russian Federation.

After they had been beaten in the head-quarters they were taken to the Central Regional Department of Internal Affairs.


Translator’s note: Sergei Mokrushin and Vladlen Melnikov  were released on June 3.

Translated by Aleksandra Demskaya, edited by Alya Shandra

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