Ukrainian pilot Savchenko partially stops hunger strike, agrees to eat broth

Ukrainian servicewoman Nadiya Savchenko, who was arrested on suspicion of abetting the killing of Russian journalists, followed doctors' advice and agreed to eat chicken broth, the press service for the Russian Penitentiary Service (FSIN) has reported.

Ukrainian servicewoman Nadiya Savchenko, who was arrested on suspicion of abetting the killing of Russian journalists, followed doctors' advice and agreed to eat chicken broth, the press service for the Russian Penitentiary Service (FSIN) has reported.

"Today, Savchenko has agreed to follow doctors' recommendations on her health and agreed to eat chicken broth," the press service told Interfax on Thursday.

The FSIN press service, however, said this does not mean that Savchenko has fully stopped her hunger strike.

The press service said Savchenko "remains under dynamic medical observation and continues receiving support therapy."

It was reported earlier with reference to Russian law enforcement agencies that Savchenko, a 33-year-old pilot, was fighting with the Aidar volunteer battalion in eastern Ukraine. It was reported in July 2014 that she was being held at the Voronezh pre-trial detention facility in Russia.

Savchenko was brought to Moscow on September 24, 2014. The Russian Investigative Committee has indicted her for complicity in the killing of Russian journalists Igor Kornelyuk and Anton Voloshin in the Luhansk region in June 2014. Savchenko refused to plead guilty and has maintained a hunger strike to protest her detention since December 12.

Moscow's Basmanny Court ruled on October 27, 2014 to extend Savchenko's pretrial detention until February 13, 2015. The pilot has maintained her hunger strike since mid-December to protest the ruling. The same court ruled on February 10 to extend her detention until May 13, 2015.

It was reported on January 29 that Russia had also opened a criminal case against Savchenko on charges of illegal border crossing.

In protest against her prosecution, Savchenko has been on hunger strike since December 12, 2014.

Savchenko led the Batkivschyna party list in the early parliamentary elections in Ukraine on October 26 and was elected a people's deputy of Ukraine of the eighth convocation. The Verkhovna Rada later included her in the Ukrainian delegation to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE).

Savchenko has been given the title of Hero of Ukraine.

Calls to release Savchenko have been made by PACE President Anne Brasseur, European Parliament President Martin Schultz, the EU Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP), Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, and French President Francois Hollande.

In the meantime, the Russian Investigative Committee says a decision on Savchenko will be made in court.

 

Russian human rights ombudsman visits Ukrainian pilot Savchenko in Moscow jail>>>

The possibility of Savchenko's release from Russian custody was discussed at the Normandy Quartet summit in the Belarusian capital Minsk on February 12.

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