Sign the Petition: Tell the Ukrainian Government to Drop Prosecution of Peace Activist Yurii Sheliazhenko

Stop the War Coalition would like to extend our support and solidarity to Ukrainian peace activist, Yurii Sheliazhenko, after his Kiev apartment was raided earlier today by what he believes to be the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU). Yurii is a brave conscientious objector and peace campaigner who has repeatedly called out the leaders of both sides in the NATO-Russia proxy war which has already claimed tens of thousands of lives. His commitment to peace and non-violence is not up for question.

We would like to place on record our thanks and admiration to Yurii for having the courage to speak out against the war in his country by addressing our rallies on multiple occasions since Feb 2022. His determination to speak truth to power is an example to us all.

If the Ukrainian government were truly fighting a war for democracy and human rights, they would respect Mr. Sheliazhenko’s right to free speech and practice of conscientious objection. We demand an end to intimidation of him by the SBU and support the demands he has made in a letter to SBU investigator Novak O.S. which are as follows:

Today, 08/03/2023, in the first half of the day, unknown people started breaking in the door to my apartment at …. When I asked who it was, they told me that it was the SBU. They refused to introduce themselves. They said they had a search warrant, but refused to read it. I called the police in case it is not the SBU, but criminals, as well as the lawyers of O. Veremienko and S. Novytska, in case it is really an investigator, who for some reason illegally does not identify himself. I also received phone calls from numbers unknown to me from persons who introduced themselves as representatives of the police, but did not name themselves and said that they checked the documents and under the door of the alleged SBU, but refused to inform me of the names and titles of the persons allegedly from the SBU and refused to read the court order, so I doubted , is it really the police. I asked, if it is really the SBU, to wait 45 minutes for my lawyer to arrive, but they did not wait, did not introduce themselves and did not read the statement so that I could open the door, and they broke the door. Subsequently, investigative actions (search) began without the presence of a lawyer, and they forcibly took away my Oikutel mobile phone number …. , on which I used to record illegal actions when they broke into my door and did not introduce themselves .

From SBU investigator Novak, I received a document similar to a copy of the ruling of the Pechersk District Court dated July 5, 2023, in which, on the basis of conjectures, the alleged justification of Russian aggression (against which I constantly speak out when carrying out non-violent resistance to aggression, as a pacifist) and the alleged obstruction of activity The Armed Forces of Ukraine (although as a pacifist I criticize and loudly condemn all armed forces, starting with the Russian ones, I have never done anything illegal that could even with a stretch be competently qualified under the relevant article of the Criminal Code of Ukraine) permission was granted to search me, seize documents , equipment, etc., which may contain evidence of the commission of the specified crimes.

During the search, nothing even remotely similar to evidence of justification of Russian aggression or any other criminal actions of mine was found. Therefore, I object to the seizure of any materials, since none of the materials and equipment that were found are and cannot be evidence of the commission of crimes on my part, and also, taking into account the violations of my rights during these investigative actions, obtained illegally and have no evidentiary value.

In addition, from the words of the person who presented a certificate similar to the certificate of the SBU investigator Novak O.S., I learned that as a “justification of Russian aggression” the investigation absurdly considers the “Peaceful Agenda for Ukraine and the World”, approved by the decision of the meeting of the Public organization “Ukrainian Movement of Pacifists”, and the accompanying letter to the Office of the President of Ukraine, with which this statement was sent. Investigator Novak also stated that there is an expert opinion that this statement allegedly justifies Russian aggression, which is absurd, because the statement condemns Russian aggression, and if such a conclusion really exists, it must be illiterate, inconsistent with objective reality and, perhaps, fabricated from the motives of ideological hatred of pacifism, which is unprofessional for any scientist, and therefore, most likely, drawing up such a conclusion may have signs of forging documents, exceeding official powers, giving a knowingly false conclusion by an expert. In general, judging by the court decision, which conveys the position of the investigation regarding the alleged criminality of the activities of the human rights and peace movement, I believe that this criminal proceeding is illegal, unlawful and politically motivated, a manifestation of repression against the peace movement. Our organization is part of the international networks of the peace movement, in particular, the International Peace Bureau (Nobel laureate in 1910), whose representatives were briefly informed about the persecution of the peace movement in Ukraine under the fabricated and slanderous pretext.

In connection with the above


  1. To stop obstructing the legitimate human rights activities of me personally, the public organization “Ukrainian Movement of Pacifists” and the peace movement in general. Pacifists are on every side of every war and offer non-violent resistance, including by criticizing all human rights abuses, war and militarism, including Putin’s criminal militarism and brutal aggression against Ukraine. As a result of the current actions of the SBU, I feel like a victim not only of the Russian aggressors, but also of the repressive militarist machine of the Ukrainian state, in particular the special services, which, due to the lack of work of the parliament and the VRU Commissioner for Human Rights, feel impunity when human rights are violated due to insufficient democratic civilian control in the sphere of security and defense , which, by the way, is one of the goals of our organization, against which these shameful and illegal repressions by the SBU were initiated.
  2. Do not seize ANYTHING, as NO evidence of any illegal actions by me or anyone else was found during the search.
  3. Give me the opportunity to familiarize myself with the materials of the criminal proceedings and especially with the so-called expert opinion, so that I can study and review it myself from a professional point of view, as a doctor of philosophy in law, and involve independent experts to review this document (if its content corresponds to the words of the investigator Novak, this document must be non-scientific and must be evidence of the commission of a crime by an expert).

Yu.V. Shelyazhenko

03 Aug 2023 by Stop the War

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