Plahotniuc regime spits in the face of European deputies, extends arrest of Petrenko group
On Friday, February 26, the Riscani Sector Court in Chisinau, Moldova, rejected the personal guarantee of European Parliament and PACE members Helmut Scholz, Andrej Hunko and George Lukaydisa, who arrived in Moldova to demand the unconditional release of the Petrenko Group political prisoners.
|Red Bloc leader Grigory Petrenko (center) with MEPs and PACE members in court Feb. 26.|
The judges dismissed as unreasonable demands for the release of all Petrenko Group political prisoners under the guarantee submitted in person by representatives of the European Parliament and the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe.
At the same time, the court granted the prosecutors’ request to extend their house arrest for 30 days.
Recall that several members and activists of the opposition party Red Bloc headed by former deputy and honorary member of PACE Grigory Petrenko have been under arrest since September 6, 2015, following a peaceful protest against the oligarchic regime in front of the Prosecutor General’s Office.
On February 22 — after almost 6 months detention in jail – the political prisoners were transferred to house arrest. The decision was made by the Riscani Court upon a request filed by the parliamentary faction of the Party of Socialists of the Republic of Moldova (PSRM).
It should be noted that the February 22 hearing was convened urgently, without the consent of the official attorneys of the political prisoners, and held behind closed doors.
According to the attorney for the political prisoners Ana Ursachi, the judgment was unauthorized and illegal. Grigory Petrenko said afterwards that “February 22 was a show, directed by [oligarch Vlad] Plahotniuc.”
Translated by Greg Butterfield