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Russian Court Starts Hearings Against Dzhemilev's Son

KRASNODAR, Russia -- A court in the Russian city of Krasnodar has started hearings into the case against a son of veteran Crimean Tatar leader Mustafa Dzhemilev.

Khaiser Dzhemilev was arrested in May 2013 by Ukrainian authorities after allegedly shooting a friend dead. Khaiser has claimed he shot his friend accidentally.

After Crimea's annexation by Russia in March last year, the Moscow-backed authorities took over Khaiser's case and transferred him to Russia's Krasnodar region.

They said Khaiser Dzhemilev was being held on three charges under the Russian Criminal Code, including murder and the illegal possession of weapons.

The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) has ruled that Russia must release Khaiser from detention, but Moscow ignored the ruling.

Khaiser Dzhemilev's lawyer, Nikolai Polozov, told RFE/RL on April 14 that Russia violates his client’s rights and international regulations by ignoring the ECHR ruling.

Longtime Crimean Tatar leader Mustafa Dzhemilev, who strongly protested the annexation and is currently living in Ukraine, was barred in May from entering the peninsula.

Mustafa Dzhemilev says the Kremlin is holding Khaiser hostage because of his father's rejection of the annexation.