LONDON, May 7. /TASS/. Soviet dissident and writer Vladimir Bukovsky, who faces abuse image charges in Great Britain where he lives, will stay in a medically induced coma for the next 72 hours as German medics fight for his life after an hours-long heart surgery, his close friend told TASS on Thursday.
"This hypocritical campaign to blacken his name with absurd poisonous accusations was launched at the very ‘proper’ moment, when Vladimir is physically incapable to protect himself," Pavel Stroilov said referring to a probe in which Bukovsky is charged with the making and possession of indecent images of children.
According to Stroilov, two heart valves were replaced during the heart surgery on the writer. Medics say the operation was successful, the patient is no longer in a critical condition, but his life is still in danger.
On April 27, Bukovsky, who lives in Cambridge, was charged with making and possessing indecent images of children. The Cambridge Magistrates’ Court adjourned the case until May 22.
On May 5, Bukovsky was due to appear in Court, but his lawyer said he had left the country for health reasons. He reportedly left Great Britain on April 29.
Maximum punishment for making indecent images of children is ten years in prison. However, in less grave cases it may be mitigated to a community sentence.
Bukovsky, 72, was a well-known activist of dissident movement in the Soviet Union in the 1960s-1970s. In 1972 he was sentenced to two years in prison and five years of exile for "anti-Soviet propaganda".
In 1976, the Soviet authorities exchanged Bukovsky for the general secretary of the Communist Party of Chile Luis Corvalan, serving a prison term in Chile. Since then, the former Soviet dissident has lived in Cambridge.
PM Viktor Orbán decorated Bukovsky with the Order of Merit of the Hungarian Republic award on April 29, 2011.
In an interview with the Hungarian media then, the foremost human rights acticist said: "The European Union is a softer version of the Soviet Union. It still doesn't have its own Gulag, but the two systems are very similar, including their philosophies of running the empire. None of them democratic, both controlled from the top by an unelected leadership.
The European Commission is not elected by us. We elect the European Parliament but the body has less power than the top management. All members of the parliament receive six minutes speaking time per year. All in all, both unions are undemocratic, top managed by a unelected body, the nomenclature and you can't remove these people from power."
Replying to a question "If someone deviates from the central ideology of the EU no one sends him to forced labor camp. There are no massacres and forced medical treatments in the EU like you had to suffer in the '70s, in the Soviet Union."
Bukovsky said: "Not yet; but they are already working on it. Look at the Europol, which was formed to supervise us in 32 criminal categories. Racism and xenophobia is not a crime in any of the EU countries. But Europol can arrest us if they label us racist or xenophobe, while the terms have no legal definition. If they brand you racist you can go to jail. Will psychiatry be used against the opponents of the system? It is quite likely. I do not think they will ever build Gulags, because in Europe there is no place large enough to build such camps. Even Shetland islands in Scotland are not big enough for such thing. I believe that subtle psychiatric procedures already exist. There are already "counseling" available for those considered not sufficiently tolerant with other races or other sexually oriented individuals. In Great Britain we already have such thing, you in Hungary will have it very soon. So the "counseling" aspect is already in place.