When the art teacher of the school she attended in Efremov (Tula region, halfway between Moscow and the Ukrainian front) asked the class to draw an image in support of the Russian troops engaged against Kiev, Masha Moskaliov flipped his: it represented a woman with a little girl, missiles flying towards their heads and two flags, Russian and Ukrainian, with the words “No to war” on the first, “Glory to Ukraine” on the second.
It was April 2022, shortly after the start of the war. For that illustration, her father Aleksej was fined, then interrogated, beaten, separated from the daughter he raised alone. After investigating his past, the authorities found posts against the invasion of Ukraine. Yesterday they sentenced him to two years for “discrediting the armed forces”. But the sentence came in absentia: sure of how the judges would have expressed themselves, the man escaped from house arrest, and now he is on the run.
His daughter Masha, now 13, will be entrusted to an orphanage. Before the conviction, she had colored a heart and written: “Dad, you are my hero”. The process was very fast: three teachers and the principal testified against Moskaliov claiming that Masha’s drawing had nothing to do with the case, the man confirmed that he was against what the Kremlin insists on defining a “military operation special”: “What can be said about those deaths, about the people who are killed? Of the adults and children who are all dying? You can only condemn them.”
Yesterday in the courtroom a court official announced his escape, someone present in the courtroom applauded and shouted: “Bravo!”. The lawyer, Vladimir Bilienko, however, said he was shocked. On April 6, a decision will be made on the revocation of parental authority. According to the Russian NGO Ovd-info, 378 criminal cases were opened in 2022 on charges related to the Russian offensive in Ukraine.
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