Statement of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Ukraine concerning an attempt by the Russian Federation to organize the detainment, arrest and extradition of Arseniy Yatsenyuk
The Ministry of Internal Affairs of Ukraine received a copy of the appeal from the law enforcement agencies of the Russian Federation to the General Secretariat of Interpol in Lyon, France, with a request to issue an international arrest warrant against A.P.Yatseniuk with the purpose to detain him and subsequently extradite to Russia. At the same time, this request is not an Interpol official international wanted person notice for Arseniy Yatsenyuk and should be examined for compliance with the Interpol Constitution and the Rules.
Russian law enforcement agencies allegedly issued an arrest warrant against Mr. Yatseniuk and accused him of "engaging in an armed gang", "deliberately killing of two or more people committed in conspiracy by a group of persons" and "attempting to deliberately kill two or more people committed in conspiracy by a group of persons".
The request of the Russian Federation to Interpol is based on the arrest warrant against A.P.Yatsenyuk, which was allegedly issued on March 3, 2017, by the city court of Essentuki in the Stavropol Territory of the Russian Federation. The Russian investigators allegedly suspect that Mr. Yatsenyuk, using Kalashnikov assault rifle, killed 30 and injured 13 Russian servicemen during the fighting in the city of Grozny, the Chechen Republic. This, in the opinion of the Russian investigation, had occurred when A.P. Yatsenyuk was allegedly "a member of the armed gang "Dream” and along with it "participated in attacks on the Russian servicemen, on Russian military units on the territory of the “Presidential Palace”, “Minutka” Square, and the Grozny railway station” from December 31, 1994, to January 2, 1995.
On April 20, 2017, Minister of Internal Affairs of Ukraine Arsen Avakov wrote a formal letter to the Secretary General of Interpol Mr. Jürgen Stock. In this letter were presented well-known and more than convincing facts and arguments, which testify to the obvious baselessness of accusations against the citizen of Ukraine Mr. A.P.Yatsenyuk. In particular, Arsen Avakov assured Interpol's Secretary General that Mr. Yatsenyuk had never been to Chechnya, had not participated in any armed conflicts and during the time period, which was indicated by the Russian investigators, he had lived, studied and worked at the place of his birth in the territory of Ukraine.
At the same time Mr. Avakov cited well-known facts that testify to the illegality and political motivation of the actions of the investigative and judicial bodies of the Russian Federation. He also mentioned that the legal position of the Russian judiciary, according to the information available to the Ukrainian MIA, was based on evidences obtained under torture from illegally convicted in the Russian Federation citizens of Ukraine. This assessment of Russia's actions against Mr. Yatsenyuk, as was stressed in the Minister Avakov letter, is the official public position of the state of Ukraine, in particular, the position of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine and the Ministry of Justice of Ukraine. Thus, the Ministry of Justice of Ukraine formally appealed to all democratic countries and the European Court of Human Rights with a request to refrain from recognizing decisions taken by the Russian authorities and courts against Mr. A.P. Yatsenyuk.
In connection with the above, the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Ukraine officially reminds of the fundamental norms of Ukrainian and international law, applicable in this situation:
1. Protection of law and order and criminal justice process in any country should be based on facts and evidences, which were obtained according to a due process of law without coercion and torture. Absurd and obviously unsubstantiated accusations of citizens in committing crimes should not be taken into account in judicial proceedings.
2. Politically motivated and unreasonable decisions of the judicial authorities cannot serve as a ground for the detainment, arrest and extradition of any citizen.
The described above norms are clearly stated in the constitutions of Ukraine and the Russian Federation and the codes of criminal procedure of these (and most other) countries.
Considering the above and taking into account the provisions of Articles 2 and 3 of the ICPO-Interpol Constitution, which forbid the Organization to undertake any intervention or activities of a political, military, religious or racial character in order to ensure the political neutrality of the International Criminal Police Organization, the Ministry hopes that the General Secretariat and the Commission for the Control of INTERPOL’s Files will consider the Ukraine's position and prohibit the use of Interpol's capabilities and mechanisms for the political persecution of Mr. A.P.Yatsenyuk, inspired by the Russian side.
The Ministry of Internal Affairs of Ukraine and its relevant units are ready to provide journalists and public activists with professional clarifications.
Department of communication of MIA-Ukraine