Former Political Prisoner Oleg Sentsov to Address Human Rights in Crimea at Georgetown University


WASHINGTON, DC—Oleg Sentsov, the acclaimed Ukrainian filmmaker, activist and political prisoner, will speak on Monday, January 27 at 5pm at Georgetown University’s Copley Lounge.

Sentsov, a vocal opponent of Russia’s 2014 takeover of Crimea, was detained by Russian authorities in May of 2014 on spurious charges of terrorism. He was then sentenced to 20 years in a Russian prison north of the Arctic Circle (nicknamed the “polar bear” prison) until his release in September of 2019 as part of a prisoner swap.

The event will be moderated by Ambassador John Tefft, former Ambassador to Ukraine (2009-2013) and to Russia (2014-2017).

Maria Tomak, Founder of the Media Initiative for Human Rights, and Andrey Kurkov, President of PEN Ukraine, will also be featured. 

PEN America, the Georgetown Institute for Women, Peace and Security, the U.S.-Ukraine Foundation, and Georgetown University’s Center for Eurasian, Russian and East European Studies will co-host the discussion.

Oleg is the winner of PEN America’s 2017 PEN/Barbey Freedom to Write Award, granted each year to a writer imprisoned for their work.

Further information regarding Oleg’s case can be found on PEN America’s website.


RSVP for the event here


Media Contact: Sarah Rutherford