U.S. envoy to UN says Savchenko 'should be free'

11:15, 10 March 2016

The U.S. ambassador to the United Nations Samantha Power said Wednesday that former Ukrainian pilot Nadia Savchenko had been subjected to a "farcical trial" and called on Russia to immediately release her, the Daily Mail reported.


"She belongs back in Ukraine, working alongside her colleagues in the Rada (parliament) to build a better future for her country," said Samantha Power in a statement, according to the Daily Mail.

"We call on Russia to release her at once."

Savchenko delivered a final statement in her defense during her trial in a Russian court where she stands accused of killing two Russian journalists during shelling in eastern Ukraine.

Power recalled that she had twice met Savchenko's mother, Maria, who has expressed alarm over her daughter's worsening health.

The 34-year-old military helicopter pilot has been on a dry hunger strike for nearly a week.

"Savchenko – as well as all Ukrainians who are being held illegally by separatists and by Russia – should be free," said Power.

The U.S. ambassador has been a vocal supporter of Ukraine at the UN Security Council, repeatedly accusing Russia of backing separatists in their campaign against the Kyiv government.

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