Berlin, Germany – The International Peace Bureau strongly condemns the Security Service of Ukraine’s (SBU) decision to charge IPB Councilmember and Seán MacBride Prize Laureate Yurii Sheliazhenko with “justification of Russian aggression” and search of his apartment. The charge is based solely on Sheliazhenko’s “Peace Agenda for Ukraine and the World,” a document which explicitly condemns the Russian invasion of Ukraine and promotes peace, justice, and the right to conscientious objection to military service.
Yurii and his organization, the Ukrainian Pacifist Movement, have always opposed both sides of the current war and advocated for dialogue, negotiations, and a peaceful resolution which addresses the underlying causes of the war.
We call on the Ukrainian government and the SBU to respect the rights of conscientious objectors and the right to free speech for peace in Ukraine, rights that cannot be violated even during times of war. We vow to support Yurii’s rights and to rally international support for his freedom and wellbeing.
Yurii’s response to the charges and search can be found at https://worldbeyondwar.org/we-object-to-the-illegal-search-and-seizure-at-apartment-of-yurii-sheliazhenko-in-kyiv/
A petition for the Ukrainian government to drop the prosecution of Yurri can be found here: https://actionnetwork.org/petitions/tell-the-ukrainian-government-to-drop-prosecution-of-peace-activist-yurii-sheliazhenko/
Please see attached Press Release.