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Land fraud ruins Donetsk farmers

Land fraud ruins Donetsk farmers

In Artemivsk district locals complain of arbitrariness of “Bakhmut Agro”, a big agrarian enterprise.

Several people, residents of villages subordinated to Yakovlivka village council, filed complaints against actions of people who are considered to be representatives of this company. 

The victims say that representatives of “Bakhmut Agro” planted sunflower on the plots of land given to the victims or leased by them to use as pastures or to harvest corn on them.

Valentyna Shalimova's family have several land plots of total area of 12 hectares in Yakovlivka. They also had 10 cows and 80 sheep. They took meat and milk to processing plants. Now their farm is not so big, and there are sunflower remains on the land given to them to use as a pasture. Sunflower had been grown there for several years, and it is required to recultivate the soil to start planting grass and use the land as pastures. Sunflower is heavy for land as it depletes the earth. It should not be grown on the same plot of land for several years in succession. However, it had been planted on the Shalimovs' land. The State Agricultural Inspection in the Donetsk region has confirmed that the Shalimovs' land “is used without permission and not for the purpose”.

The application to law enforcement bodies has been useless so far though the information was registered in the Single Register of Prejudicial Inquiries. Valentina says that she has been threatened, and  by armed people, too for her active position.

Yakovlivka village Head Larysa Bessmertna thinks that the village council is not able  to resolve the conflict between the village resident and the judicial person.

Vera Rybalko from the village of Berestove has faced the same problem. She says that her land is used for free.

Another Berestove resident Ludmyla Bondareva says that the same situation is with the lans that she rented.

Thus, it is evident that some people use the land without observing the technology and without paying for it; they get excess profit and then leave it.

The real chief of “Bakhmut Agro”, Oleksiy Valivakhin, first agreed to meet and to comment on the conflict; then he stopped answering the calls.

“Bakhmut Agro” is one of the biggest businesses in the district, and it is well-known. Its founder is also well-known too. It is Volodymyr Ivankov. In 2010 he was elected deputy of Artemivsk town council from the Party of Regions. He is the owner of a number of businesses in various spheres, from jewelry to agriculture. He likes expensive cars from Hammer to Ferrary.

When president Victor Yanukovych ran away and some part of the Donetsk region was occupied, ivankov could not find common language with the militants of “Donetsk Peoples Republic”; his house in Artemivsk was robbed and some expensive vehicles were stolen.

“DPR” militants try to justify themselves saying that Volodymyr Ivankov is a criminal authority with a byname “Eared”; he helped the Ukrainian Army and was involved in gambling business.
 
Some days later, after the house robbery, several militants were shot dead including the so-called “DPR” commandant of the town with a byname “Veles”. Militants suspect Ivankov in the liquidation of “Veles”.

When Artemivsk was liberated, Ivankov came back. At the moment, law enforcers have no questions to him. Ivankov even made friends with ex-chief of Donetsk regional police department Illya Kiva.

Later Kiva took the posotion of the Chief of the Department of Drug Crimes Combat of the National Police.

On the one hand — small landowners; on the other hand — a big business with an authoritative founder. What about the law: who will it support? So far, not the weak.

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