Day 402 - Paul Whelan - Lefortovo Prison Moscow - February 3, 2020 - Ambassador Sullivan's Visit, Appeal Hearing
US Ambassador to the Russian Federation John Sullivan visited Paul last Thursday [1/30/20]. After the visit, Ambassador Sullivan called for Paul's release: "What we need in [Paul Whelan's] case - where there is no evidence and clearly no crime - is to have him released as soon as possible .... It's time for this nightmare to end, and for Paul to go home."
Ambassador Sullivan delivered family messages and we're confident his visit was encouraging for Paul. The Embassy confirmed afterwards that Paul's condition remains unchanged. Ambassador Sullivan: "His health has clearly deteriorated since he was arrested over 13 months ago, and, most significantly, he hasn't received medical treatment for those medical problems, ... and [which are], potentially, a serious threat to his health."
[Ambassador Sullivan's statements: https://ruptly.tv/en/videos/
The Russian police deny him access to an English-speaking medical professional and won't share medical records. No-one outside the prison knows how much worse his health has become. Paul has made multiple requests to phone our parents. Ambassador Sullivan said that these requests have been "either denied or ignored," treatment that "violates international norms and standards of decency." FSB staff at the consular visit confirmed that Paul's requests to make phone calls have been denied.
[Ambassador Sullivan's statements: https://www.rferl.org/a/
russia-whelan-u-s-ambassador- shameful-treatment-jailed- marine/30410148.html; https://www.washingtontimes. com/news/2020/jan/30/paul- whelan-american-jailed-in- moscow-visited-by-t/; https://www.reuters.com/ article/us-russia-usa-whelan- idUSKBN1ZT2NI ]
Paul asked the Embassy staff to have us share this message for media: "Here over a year. No evidence. No crime. No medical treatment. Everything is fabricated." Unfortunately, an FSB officer overseeing the consular visit interrupted and would not let Paul finish sharing his remarks with the Ambassador and US Embassy staff.
Paul's detention was extended for 3 months on December 23, 2019. Paul's defense lawyers have appealed the latest continuation of his detention. Like the movie "Groundhog Day", each hearing is a repetition of the same pointless exercise. There is no review of evidence or the validity of charges. Only a repeated commitment by the Moscow court to continue Paul's wrongful detention so long as the FSB demands it. The appeal hearing is tomorrow [2/4/2020] and we hope Paul will continue be defiant against this ongoing injustice.