Support The Moscow Times!

Crimean Tatar Leader Mustafa Dzhemilev on Federal Wanted List

Former chairman of the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatars Mustafa Dzhemilev

An arrest warrant has been issued for former Crimean Tatar leader Mustafa Dzhemilev, the TASS news agency reported Thursday, citing the peninsula's General Prosecutor Natalia Poklonskaya.

The former leader of the Mejlis — the Crimean Tatars' representative body — has been placed on a federal wanted list, said Poklonskaya, citing a Simferopol court order.

Dzhemilev was one of the organizers of a road blockade that hindered traffic to Crimea from the Ukrainian mainland and obstructed the repair of power lines after they were blown up by saboteurs in southern Ukraine, plunging Crimea into a blackout.

Poklonskaya said a criminal investigation had been opened into Dzhemilev on “several crimes,” which would not be disclosed in order not to obstruct the prosecutors' work.

Dzhemilev fled to Ukraine after he was banned from the peninsula for five years for inciting unrest.The relationship between Crimean Tatars and the pro-Kremlin authorities in Simferopol has been strained after the Tatar community widely opposed the peninsula's annexation by Russia in March 2014.

Read more

Independent journalism isn’t dead. You can help keep it alive.

The Moscow Times’ team of journalists has been first with the big stories on the coronavirus crisis in Russia since day one. Our exclusives and on-the-ground reporting are being read and shared by many high-profile journalists.

We wouldn’t be able to produce this crucial journalism without the support of our loyal readers. Please consider making a donation to The Moscow Times to help us continue covering this historic time in the world’s largest country.