The state Department congratulated after receiving the Sakharov prize

© RIA Novosti / Sergey Poweroperated in fotobanka Sentsov. Archival photoThe state Department congratulated after receiving the Sakharov prize© RIA Novosti / Sergey Poweroperated the image Bank

The U.S. state Department congratulated the award of the Sakharov Oleg Sentsov, who is serving punishment in Russia for terrorism.

«Congratulations Oleg Sentsov receiving the prestigious Sakharov prize, named after Russian dissident who suffered in Soviet times,» — said in a statement published on the official Twitter Department representative Heather Nauert.

«We again call on Russia to immediately release Sentsov and other political prisoners and to respect the right to freedom of expression,» she added.

On Thursday it became known about the award He European Parliament human rights prize Sakharov. The winner was named at the session in Strasbourg. The award will be presented at a ceremony in Parliament in Strasbourg on 12 December. The U.S. Embassy in Ukraine has called on Russia to release Sentsov, so he can personally to award him the Sakharov prize. In Moscow, this decision was called politicized.

Sentsov was sentenced to 20 years in prison on charges of organizing terrorist acts in the Crimea. He was detained by employees of FSB of the Russian Federation among the members of the subversive group «Right sector»* (the extremist movement banned in Russia), which prepared terrorist acts in Yalta, Simferopol and Sevastopol.

*Extremist organization banned in Russia