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Yakut shaman Alexander Gabyshev declared mentally unfit

Source: MBX Media

Psychiatrists have declared self-described shaman Alexander Gabyshev mentally unfit, reports MBX Media, citing coordinator Alexey Pryanishnikov from the human rights group Pravozashchita Otkrytki.

Gabyshev underwent a psychological and psychiatric evaluation within the framework of an ongoing criminal investigation into his alleged use of violence against an officer from the Russian National Guard. Pryanishnikov believes that now, Gabyshev may be sent for compulsory treatment yet again. 

“With regard to an appeal: we can petition for a re-examination, but we have yet to decide for ourselves how to act,” Pryanishnikov said.

MBX Media

Since 2019, Alexander Gabyshev has repeatedly announced plans to march from Yakutia to Moscow and “expel Putin” from the Kremlin. During his first two attempted campaigns, he faced harassment from law enforcement agencies and multiple criminal cases were launched against him. In May 2020, Gabyshev was forced into psychiatric treatment and held at a clinic in Yakutsk for two months. 

In January 2021, Gabyshev announced plans to undertake another campaign across the country on horseback in March. On February 2, however, the Yakutsk City Court ruled in favor of Gabyshev’s involuntary hospitalization. This came after a local psychiatric clinic filed a claim seeking Gabyshev’s readmission, on the alleged grounds that he had refused treatment and “started making loud statements in the media once again.”

In late February, the Russian Investigative Committee opened a criminal case against Alexander Gabyshev over an alleged attack on a National Guard officer. According to state investigators, when Gabyshev’s home was searched in late January, “he used a handmade knife 84 centimeters in length and inflicted a stab wound” on one of the officers.

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