Ilya Yashin: Closing Statement in Court

This is a translated excerpt from Russian opposition politician Ilya Yashin’s closing statement, which he delivered at his show trial in Moscow earlier today. Charged with “spreading false information about the Russian military,” Yashin faces up to ten years in prison if convicted, which he almost certainly will be. ||| TRR


Ilya Yashin

Taking advantage of this podium, I would also like to address Russian President Vladimir Putin, the person who is responsible for this massacre, who signed the law on military censorship, and by whose will I am in prison.

Vladimir Vladimirovich!

Seeing the consequences of this monstrous war, you have probably already understand yourself what a grave mistake you made on February 24. Our army has not been greeted with flowers. We are called executioners and occupiers.

The words “death” and “destruction” are now firmly associated with your name.

You have brought terrible misfortune to the Ukrainian people, who will probably never forgive us. But you are waging war not only against Ukrainians, but also against your compatriots.

You have sent hundreds of thousands of Russians into the inferno of battle. Many of them will never return home, turned into dust. Many will be crippled and go crazy from what they have seen and experienced. For you, they are just casualty statistics, numbers in columns. But many families the face unbearable pain of losing husbands, fathers and sons.

You have deprived Russians of their home.

Hundreds of thousands of our fellow citizens have left their homeland because they do not want to kill and be killed. People are running away from you, Mr. President. Haven’t you noticed that?

You have undermined the foundations of our economic security. By putting industry on a war footing, you have sent our country back in the wrong direction. Tanks and guns are again a priority, and poverty and disenfranchisement are again our realities. Have you forgotten that such a policy has already led our country to collapse before?

Although my words might sound like a voice crying in the wilderness, I urge you, Vladimir Vladimirovich, to stop this madness immediately. You must acknowledge that the policy towards Ukraine has been mistaken, withdraw troops from its territory, and proceed to settle the conflict diplomatically.

Remember that every new day of war means new victims. Enough is enough.

Source: Ilya Yashin, Facebook, 5 December 2022. Photo by Zlata Milyavskaya. Translated by the Russian Reader

Ivan Kudryashov: An Anti-War Street Artist in Tver

“Fuck the War”: a street art piece attributed to Ivan Kudryashov, photographed in Tver on 1 May 2022. Photo courtesy of Solidarity Zone

Ivan Kudryashov: Tver resident accused of planning arson of military enlistment office

The Telegram channel Stasia and Letters reports that Tver activist Ivan Kudryashov is in a pretrial detention center, charged with planning to set fire to a military enlistment office.

It is reported that Kudryashov repeatedly carried out anti-war protests in Tver. He was arrested on September 30 and charging with “preparing to commit a terrorist act” (per Article 30.1 and Article 205 of the Russian Federal Criminal Code). If found guilty, he faces a maximum prison sentence of eleven years and three months.

Kudryashov is, possibly, the author of the resonant “Fuck the War” street art pieces at bus stops in Tver. In any case, the VK page “Ivan Kudryashov” contains an entry about them, dated September 22.

Stasia and Letters quotes a letter from Andrei Trofimov, accused of making anti-war statements, who was held in the same cell as Kudryashov for three weeks:

“[Ivan Kudryashov] was born in the city of Bologoye and grew up in an orphanage and, later, with a foster family in Torzhok, Tver Region. He graduated from an eleven-year school. After school, he enrolled in the economics department at Tver State University. In the second year, he dropped out of university and did his obligatory military service in the Armed Forces of the Russian Federation. After that he lived in Tver and worked as a fitter at a train carriage factory. At school, he liked mathematics and was a checkers champion. He is fond of contemporary music, and is also a fan of the British TV series Sherlock.”

It is reported that Ivan Kudryashov is now in solitary confinement, which means it is especially important to write to him.

✉️📦 Address for letters and parcels:

Kudryashov Ivan Valeryevich (born 1996)

141 Vagazhanov Street

Pretriel Detention Center No. 1

Tver 170010 Russian Federation

(It is possible to send letters via the FSIN-Pismo service.)

#prisoners#solidarity #nowar#writing letters

Source: Solidarity Zone, 5 December 2022. Translated by the Russian Reader. People living outside Russia will not be able to use the Russian Federal Penitentiary Service’s FSIN-Pismo service. It is also probably impossible or nearly impossible to send parcels to Russian detention facilities from abroad. In many cases, however, you can send letters (which must written in or translated into Russian) via the free, volunteer-run service RosUznik, but as of this writing Mr. Kudryashov has not appeared on their list of addressees. You can also ask me (avvakum@pm.me) for assistance and advice in sending letters.