Artists, directors and other representatives of culture appealed to the Commissioner for Human Rights under the President of Russia, Tatyana Moskalkova, with a request to intervene in the case of director Evgenia Berkovich and playwright Svetlana Petriychuk in order to change their preventive measure. The open letter was published in Novaya Gazeta.
The appeal follows the death of Berkovich's grandmother, 89-year-old writer and human rights activist Nina Katerli, on November 20.
The letter says: “We ask you to help change the preventive measure for Svetlana Petriychuk and Zhenya Berkovich, if only so that she could bury her grandmother.”
The letter was signed by 23 people, including TV presenter Ivan Urgant, actors Yulia Peresild, Denis Sukhov, Danila Kozlovsky, Veniamin Smekhov, Ksenia Rappoport, Evgeny Mironov, Timofey Tribuntsev and Marietta Tsigal-Polishchuk (who took part in the play that led to the arrest).
Also, writers Lyudmila Ulitskaya and Guzel Yakhina, artistic director of the Satyricon theater Konstantin Raikin, director Alexander Sokurov, screenwriter Galina Aksenova, journalists Katerina Gordeeva (recognized by the Ministry of Justice of the Russian Federation as a foreign agent) and her husband Nikolai Solodnikov, Nobel laureate and former editor-in-chief, also addressed the Ombudsman. Novaya Gazeta" Dmitry Muratov (recognized by the Ministry of Justice of the Russian Federation as a foreign agent).
Earlier it became known that the Moscow City Court extended the arrest of director Evgenia Berkovich and playwright Svetlana Petriychuk; they will remain in pre-trial detention until January 10. Berkovich and Petriychuk are charged under Article 205.2 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation (“Public calls for terrorist activities, public justification of terrorism or propaganda of terrorism”).
The reason was their play “Finist - Clear Falcon,” which tells about women who met representatives of radical Islam on social networks. The director and playwright deny any wrongdoing.