Ukraine’s President P. Poroshenko stated, “The world hasn’t seen anything even remotely resembling a court in the process against Nadiya Savchenko. It was a shameful show trial organized by the country-aggressor against the Ukrainian Officer who defended her land from enemy’s encroachment. Ukraine will never recognize either this show trial or their so-called sentence, absurdity and cruelty of which proves that Russian justice has returned to the period of Stalin-Vyshinsky. Both Ukrainian and international personal sanctions must be imposed against everyone involved in prosecution of Nadiya Savchenko, Oleg Sentsov and other Ukrainian citizens, Ukrainian patriots-hostages illegally tortured in Russian territory. The whole world supports us in the battle for Nadiya’s liberation. From now on, this struggle enters the final stage. […] In the course of the meetings at the highest level in the Normandy format, I have repeatedly raised the issue of liberation of Nadiya and other Ukrainian hostages. And I have received support from other participants of the format. President Putin said that he would return Nadiya Savchenko to Ukraine after the so-called court decision. Now it is the time to fulfill that promise. In my turn, I am ready to convey two Russian servicemen detained in our territory for their participation in the armed aggression against Ukraine. Judicial inquiry of their cases is on the final stage. Immediately after its completion, I am ready to ensure their transportation to the Russian Federation through appropriate procedures. […] Today, the entire Ukraine is together with Nadiya, her mother Mariya Ivanivna and sister Vira. I believe that our common efforts will be successful. And the Hero of Ukraine, people’s deputy of Ukraine, officer of the Ukrainian Armed Forces will come back home. We are waiting for her. Glory to Ukraine!”
Crisis in Ukraine: Daily Briefing
22 March 2016, 6 PM Kyiv time
1. Russian Invasion of Ukraine
The National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine (RNBO) reported that yesterday towards Donetsk Russian-terrorist forces shelled Ukrainian positions at Luhanske village and Avdiyivka with mortars. Towards Mariupol, Russian-terrorist forces attacked Ukrainian forces near Novotroitske. The attack was repelled. Russian-terrorist forces fired on Ukrainian positions at Maryinka and Shyrokyne. There was no combat on the Luhansk sector of the front. The RNBO reported that in the last 24 hours no Ukrainian soldiers were killed and three were wounded.
2. Russian court sentences Nadiya Savchenko to 22 years in prison following show trial
A court in Russia convicted Ukrainian pilot and MP Nadiya Savchenko and sentenced her to 22 years in prison. Russian Judge Leonid Stepanenko concluded reading the “verdict” and “sentence” in Russia’s illegal trial of Savchenko today. Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL) reported, “During the hearing on March 22, [Savchenko] wore a T-shirt emblazoned with a Ukrainian patriotic symbol and frequently sat down while the rest of the court stood for the judge’s ruling. At one point during the hearing, laughter was heard in the courtroom and the judge asked if anyone found the proceedings amusing. Savchenko yelled from her holding area, ‘I do.'” Savchenko was serving in eastern Ukraine, when abducted by Kremlin-backed terrorists in June 2014 and taken to Russia, where she has been illegally detained and imprisoned since that time. Russia has ignored repeated calls from the international community for her immediate release.
3. Ukraine’s President: Ukraine will never recognize the show trial or so-called sentence of Nadiya Savchenko