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A story of a businessman who gave away all his money to be released from “DPR” captivity

A story of a businessman who gave away all his money to be released from “DPR” captivity

Donbas Public TV: “Donetsk Dialogue” journalists talked to a Kramatorsk resident who had gone through “DPR” captivity on.

Dmytro, Kramatorsk resident, says that when the town was seized the locals did not even understand at the very beginning that their lives had changed so seriously. Now they were walking along the same streets with armed militants who could kidnap them, take away their property or shoot in the air just for fun. Dmytro says that his family could not believe it was all real for a long time.

“It wasn't quite clear what was going on. Before the shelling began, my wife had thought that it was all a bad joke, a hoax. But later, in May she was walking along the street and armed people who did not look sane were walking nearby. One of them started sending volleys of automatic gunfire into the air. It was so scary that it took a lot of time for my wife to calm down when she arrived home. When a lot of alien people came here, it was easy to distinguish them, they were on duty at checkpoints, unknown cars were driving along the streets”, says Dmytro.

There were more and more rumours about kidnapping and money extortion as militants were looking for easy money. Dmytro was running a small business at that time so he attracted militants' attention.

“I was sitting at my home computer and I didn't even hear the doorbell or knocking on the door. I just noticed that some strangers appeared in the room and then they hit me on the head and I lost consciousness. When I regained it I was in some room. I think, my kidnappers are already out of the town. They were not locals as their accent betrayed them — they spoke like people from Russia and some of them had Caucasian Russian accent. It was extortion, they were interested in money. I think they had got to know that we had sold our business preparing for the departure. My wife was not at home on that day, she was busy with financial issues. It all happened in the morning and I got home in the evening, it was already dark. I don't remember how long I was there”, continues Dmytro.

The man says that after a day in captivity he was ready to give militants everything just to return to his family.

“I wouldn't like to go into detail, but they resorted to some physical coercion, probably. I think, they used some chemical injections, I don't remember a lot of things, maybe because they had hit me on the head. They threatened to harm my family so it was easier for me to give away the money than to resist. There aren not a lot of things you can do against an armed person.”

According to Dmytro's words, to seek protection from law enforcers in occupied Kramatorsk was in vain as they all collaborated with armed militants. Businessmen and patriots of Ukraine were  at special risk. The former were kidnapped for money, the latter were just eliminated. This is the reason why only separatists' voices are heard from the pccupied territory now. Patriots remain silent as their words can literally cost them life.

“I didn't share my views openly but I used social networks and I openly supported Ukraine there. There was a moment when I had to delete all my accounts and all the messages history as well. There were rumours that all the accounts were read by the occupants. Besides, when the town was seized, they got access to all the documents in the tax inspection and other institutions. It was not clear who could get all the information, there was no police, it was impossible to speak about safety”, says Dmytro.
Maryna Brahyna, a social psychologist, explains: “Such a kind of crisis changes a person radically, everyone acts according to their moral rules. When the society feels that there are no authorities, they switch on to deviant behaviour, in fact, people understand that there is certain impunity. Even those people who used to be law-abiding before the war do horrible things. They become aggressive and savage — this is what we could see.”


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