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Over 30 members of banned Mejlis of Crimean Tatars convicted in Russia since 2016

MOSCOW. Sept 15 (Interfax) – Thirty-two supporters of the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatars, outlawed in Russia, have been convicted by Russian courts since 2016, the press center for the Russian Federal Security Service (FSB) said in a statement.

"Since April 2016, 32 supporters of the Mejlis have been convicted under different articles of the Russian Criminal Code, including under general crime articles. Criminal proceedings have been instituted against 50, administrative proceedings opened against 306, an entry ban has been imposed on 33, 53 anti-Russian actions were thwarted, and 301 prosecutorial warnings and 297 police warnings have been issued," the press center said.

Mejlis leader Refat Chubarov, currently in Ukraine, was given a six-year prison sentence in absentia this year for organizing mass riots in 2014 and for making public calls in favor of violating Russia’s territorial integrity, it said.

"Despite the extremist and criminal nature of the activities of Mejlis members and supporters, the results of dismantling them have been portrayed by foreign media as ‘deliberate measure by the Russian authorities aimed at restricting the rights of Crimean Tatars and their genocide,’" the FSB said.