Ukraine City Councilman is Accused of Treason in Returning Russian Pilot
- A Kherson councilman has been charged with treason in relation to the release of a Russian pilot.
- The lawyer for Illia Karamalikov has denied the charges, stating that he had no other options in the occupied capital.
- This case highlights a problem facing Ukraine as it investigates Russian collaborators.
Soon after Russian forces captured Kherson, a group made up of civilians took a Russian pilot into custody. A local city council member was not sure what to do and decided to release him. He is now facing treason charges from the Ukrainian government.
Kherson, a port in the south, was the first major Ukrainian town to be seized by Russian forces following the February invasion. The regional capital was held for eight months until Russian officials announced a retreatIn November, the Russian President Vladimir Putin was humiliated by his war effort and the city was handed back to Ukraine.
According to Illia Karmalikov, a nightclub entrepreneur and city councilman, she had organized civilian patrols after the Russian invasion. The New York Times. Karamalikov was notified by a patrol group that a Russian pilot had been found and taken into custody. He was covered in mud, stumbling and was being held.
Karamalikov’s lawyer Mykhailo Valychko said to the Times, “Nobody could decide what to do.” “They couldn’t hand him over to Ukrainian forces — there were no Ukrainian forces in the city at that time. There was also no Red Cross. The Russians were everywhere.”
Karamalikov decided to release the pilot after temporarily keeping him in a room at his house.
According to reports, Karamalikov was taken into custody two months later while he was traveling from Kherson to Ukrainian-held territory. CNN. According to the indictment, he was accused of taking “actions that were aimed at harming Ukraine’s sovereignty, territorial integrity, and inviolability” and that he switched sides with the aggressor country, the Russian Federation, during martial law and by aiding its representatives in subversive activities towards Ukraine.
Velichko denied all charges and stated that Karamalikov was trying keep order in Kherson.
The Times interviewed more than 12 people in Kherson to discuss Karamalikov’s decision. They all agreed that keeping the pilot in a city dominated Russian forces would have put civilians at risk.
This case highlights the challenge facing Ukrainian authorities after the Russian forces withdraw. According to the country, it is a “stable” situation. investigating hundreds of cases of Ukrainians accused of collaborating with RussiaHowever, some people believe that local officials might have opted to remain in their posts to help residents and look after their city, instead of supporting the enemy.
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