Representatives of the Ukrainian Embassy in Russia, a Spokesman for the European Commission in the Russian Federation and the European Union diplomats arrived to attend the meeting of the Supreme Court to consider the appeal against the decision of the so-called Supreme Court of the Crimea of April 26, 2016 to recognize the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar people extremist organization and ban its activity, UNIAN reports.

Two buses with the Moscow SWAT are located in front of the courthouse to enhance the Security measures.

The meeting was scheduled for 11:00 Moscow time, but it started with a delay of 30 minutes.

Prior to the meeting, the legal director of the "Memorial" human rights center, lawyer Kyril Koroteyev said that the defense does not expect the court to make decision in favor of the Mejlis, according to UNIAN correspondent.

“The Supreme Court's jurisprudence shows that the Court has never repealed the decision to recognize an organization as extremist. And there is no hope that it will happen this time,” Koroteyev said.

He believes that the Supreme Court judges are more likely to be guided by a bureaucratic reporting on combat extremism than protection of the Crimean Tatars’ rights.

Moreover, the human rights activist believes that following the today's decision of the Supreme Court, a new wave of repression against the Crimean Tatars will begin in the occupied Crimea.

According to the correspondent of Radio.Svoboda , the defense represented by attorneys Marina Agaltsova and Kirill Koroteyev, brought the grounds to set aside the decision to ban the Mejlis.

The defense insists that Mejlis may not be sued, because it is not a public organization.

“A group of people can be recognized a non-profit organization, if this organization has a statute. The Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar people does not have a statute, and can not have it,” the lawyer Koroteyev said.

Crimean Tatar people elect Kurultai [the Council] and the Kurultai members are the Mejlis of 33 people, he explained.

“The activity of Mejlis is regulated by Article 5 of the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, which provides for the right of indigenous peoples to maintain and strengthen their distinct political and legal institutions,” said the lawyer.

Kirill Koroteyev provided another reason to set aside the decision to ban the Mejlis, which is "improper jurisdiction of the case." The defender said that the Mejlis bodies function on the territory of another state (in Ukraine), so it is impossible to ban the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar people in the territory, that has the Russian anti-extremist legislation.

The court session adjourned until 14:00.

The prosecution testified following the break. "Senior prosecutor" of the Crimea Vladimir Chuhrin insisted that "the activity of Mejlis poses threat to the security of state and society."

The panel of judges of the Supreme Court of Russia in Moscow left the courtroom for a decision on the case of prohibition of the Crimean Tatar Mejlis on the territory of Russia and Crimea, according to the Radio Liberty correspondent.

16:05 - The Russian Supreme Court dismissed the appeal, thus confirming the ban of the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar people, the journalist Anton Naumlyuk reported on Twitter.

In protest, the leadership and members of the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar people will not attend the court session, considering the appeal against the decision of the Crimean Court.


Photo: Anton Naumlyuk