Murmansk regional court starts handling appeals of 5 Greenpeace activists

The Murmansk regional court began hearing appeals against the measure of restraint imposed on Sini Saarela, a Greenpeace activist from Finland, on Monday.

The Murmansk regional court began hearing appeals against the measure of restraint imposed on Sini Saarela, a Greenpeace activist from Finland, on Monday.

An Interfax correspondent reports from the courtroom that Saarela, who took part in the action in the Pechora Sea, was taken to court under armed guard from a local detention facility.

On Monday the regional court will also handle the appeals of the second Greenpeace activist who succeeded in mounting Prirazlomnaya oil platform together with Saarela, Marco Weber from Switzerland, Polish environmentalist Tomasz Dzemianczuk, Brazilian crewmember Ana Paula Maciel and Iain Rogers from the UK.

Earlier the handling of the appeals of Weber and Maciel were postponed due to translation difficulties.

The appeals of Dzemianczuk and Saarela are being heard in Okyabrysky district court. Finnish, Polish and Russian media representatives as well as diplomats are permitted to attend the hearings.

The Arctic Sunrise icebreaker of the Greenpeace environmentalist movement was detained in the Pechora Sea on September 19 for attempting a protest action against oil drilling activities on the Prirazlomnaya platform. On September 24 the ship was taken to the port of Murmansk under the escort of border guards. It had an international crew of 30 people, including four Russians.

The Murmansk court ruled to arrest all 30 people aboard the Arctic Sunrise and charged them with piracy.

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