Ukrainian pilot given 22-year sentence

A photograph of a monitor showing a live broadcast from Donetsk City Court room during a sentence hearing of former Ukrainian military pilot Nadiya Savchenko in Donetsk, Rostov Region, Russia, 22 March 2016Image copyright

Image caption

Grabs from footage of the hearing show Savchenko listening to the verdict from her cage at the back of the courtroom

Ukrainian pilot Nadiya Savchenko has been sentenced to 22 years in jail after being convicted of charges relating to the deaths of two Russian journalists.

She was accused of directing the artillery fire in eastern Ukraine in which the two journalists died in June 2014.

Prosecutors said she was driven by “political hatred”.

She denied all the charges and her case has become internationally notorious.

Western politicians have been among those calling for her release, echoing her lawyers’ descriptions of the process as a show trial and a farce.

As Savchenko was finally pronounced guilty, following the judge’s two-day reading of the verdict, she disrupted proceedings by singing a Ukrainian national song.

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