Kiev - The Ukrainian Prosecutor’s Office launched a criminal investigation over the weekend into Shas MK Ya’acov Margi’s visit to Crimea last week, in an effort to dissuade others from visiting the peninsula and giving legitimacy to Russian rule there.
Margi, chairman of the Knesset Education Committee, stepped into a diplomatic mine-field last week when he met with the head of the Russian-established government in Crimea, Prime Minister Sergei Aksyonov, breaking with Israel’s policy of maintaining strict neutrality in the Russian-Ukrainian conflict. Russia annexed the peninsula in 2014.
According to a statement on the website of the Prosecutor’s Office of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea, “a criminal investigation” against Margi was launched “into the illegal entry” into Russian-annexed Crimea.
According to the statement, Margi and his delegation violated “the procedure for entry” into the territory annexed by Russia.
According to Ukrainian law, violation of entry procedures into Crimea is punishable by up to five years imprisonment.
The Forum Daily, a Russian language Jewish website based in New York, reported that the decision to open an investigation sends a message to the rest of the Knesset “not to meddle in violation of Ukrainian laws in occupied Crimea and not to participate in political Russian propaganda campaigns.”
Courtesy of jerusalem post