Russia: Sentsov working on new screenplay from prison

The Ukrainian filmmaker Oleh Sentsov, who is currently being held in a Russian prison, has begun work on the screenplay for an upcoming film, according to reports in the Russian media which cite Valery Maksimenko, head of Russia’s Federal Penitentiary Service (FSIN).

“He has already started writing the script for a future film. It will be a story about life in prison and the prisoners. Inspiration hasn’t left him,” Maksimenko reportedly said.

According to Maksimenko, Sentsov is currently under medical supervision, and is in the process of ending his hunger strike: “he is eating a little, mainly porridge and cultured milk products”.

At present there is no information about this on the official FSIN website. Sentsov’s family and attorney have also not responded to these claims.

It was reported earlier that Sentsov had decided to end his hunger strike on October 6, saying he was forced to do so in response to threats of “force-feeding”. According to Amnesty International, force-feeding is a form of torture.

On October 5, Russian prison wardens said that Sentsov had given written agreement that he would eat.

Sentsov’s attorney Dmitry Dinze and his sister Natalya Kaplan said that the imprisoned filmmaker’s liver was deteriorating and his kidneys may fail. Russian doctors warn that he may not survive the withdrawal from his hunger strike.

The Ukrainian filmmaker announced his hunger strike on May 14, demanding the release of all Ukrainian political prisoners in Russian prisons.

Sentsov and the Crimean anarchist Olexandr Kolchenko were arrested by Russian intelligence officers in Crimea in May 2014. In August 2015, the North Caucus District Court in Rostov-on-Don sentenced Setsov to 20 years of high-security prison on charges of terrorist activity in Crimea. Kolchenko was given 10 years. Sentsov and Kolchenko both pleaded innocent.

  Russia, Sentsov, Ukraine, Europe