Russian court rejects all requests by Savchenko’s lawyers, Lithuanian diplomat says

Nadiya Savchenko

Savchenko, a helicopter pilot at the Ukrainian air force and a member of the Ukrainian parliament, is charged of contributing to the killing of two Russian journalists during a shooting in Luhansk, east Ukraine, in June last year. Savchenko rejects the charges while her lawyers insist she is a prisoner-of-war of the Russian-Ukrainian conflict.

In an interview to BNS, Marijus Petrušonis, the Lithuanian diplomat, says that Savchenko’s lawyers have asked to use a polygraph test or bring in maps that could be used during testimonies for clarity as well as various forensic evidence.

“The lawyers say that the court refuses to grant any of the legitimate and reasonable requests made by the defence,” Petruškonis told BNS on Thursday.

During the 2014 War in Donbass, Savchenko, a first lieutenant in the Ukrainian Ground Forces, was captured by pro-Russian rebels in eastern Ukraine and handed over to Russia, where she was charged with the killing of two Russian journalists.

Petruškonis says that the Ukrainian government asked Lithuania to observe the trial so that “our attention to the process would ensure more transparency”.

Besides the Lithuanian diplomat, representatives of Slovakia, Austria, the United Kingdom and the United States are observing the trial, Petruškonis says.

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