We were deeply concerned to learn of the 13-year prison sentence handed down by the Karelia Supreme Court against historian Yuri Dmitriev.
This sentence strikes at a historian and human rights advocate known for his work on Stalin-era mass graves.
As the Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs emphasized in his speech at Charles University in Prague on December 6, 2019, where academic freedom is threatened, democracy and peace are in danger. That is why researchers must be able to work freely.
Mr. Dmitriev’s sentence is especially troubling in that his health has deteriorated significantly since the beginning of his detention.
Along with its EU partners, France is calling for Yuri Dmitriev’s immediate release. The French authorities will continue to closely monitor developments in Mr. Dmitriev’s situation.