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Tatar Activist Get Three Years In Jail For Stance On Crimea

Rafis Kashapov

A court in Russia's republic of Tatarstan has sentenced the chairman of the Tatar Public Center to three years in jail.

On September 15, the Chally City Court found Rafis Kashapov guilty of calling for separatism and inciting ethnic hatred and sentenced him the same day.

Kashapov placed several articles on the Internet last year harshly criticizing Russia's annexation of Tatar-populated Crimea from Ukraine and Moscow's involvement in the conflict in eastern Ukraine.

He was arrested on December 28 upon return from Turkey.

Kashapov pleaded not guilty and called his case politically motivated.

Kashapov's Tatar Public Center is an NGO in Tatarstan's second largest city, Chally, which campaigns to preserve Tatars' national identity, language, and culture.