Man detained for anti-war picket on Red Square held and drugged in psychiatric ward

A man who was arrested for an anti-war protest on Moscow’s Red Square in April was detained and drugged in a psychiatric ward to prevent him from filing a complaint against his arrest, independent human rights group OVD-Info reported on Wednesday.

Denis Khamidullin was detained on 28 April and sentenced by a Moscow court to 14 days in a detention centre for resisting arrest and “discrediting” the Russian army for chanting “no to war” as part of his protest.

Khamidullin’s mother said he had been sent to the psychiatric ward on 5 May for allegedly attacking police officers. There, Khamidullin said he was injected with psychotropic drugs that made it difficult for him to stand, move or hold a pen, and therefore impossible for him to file a complaint against his arrest.

Khamidullin spent nine days in the psychiatric ward and returned to the detention centre on Monday, where he will be detained for a further seven days to compensate for the time missed.

On Tuesday, Khamidullin and his lawyer petitioned a Moscow court to extend the deadline to file his complaint. The judge refused, arguing that Khamidullin could have gone to court on time, despite him being unable to walk without assistance and an ambulance being called to the courthouse to help him.

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