The trial was adjourned because a motion was filed seeking to draw a clear distinction between the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar people and local Mejlis branches, Zair Smedlyayev, Chairman of the Kurultay’s Central Executive Committee, said in an interview with QHA.
“If the entire organization, i.e. the Mejlis and its branches, is going to be banned, then one of the parties to the proceedings should be represented by both the Mejlis and Mejlis branches members. Therefore, if they decide to ban the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar people, including its branches, they would make a mistake because local Mejlis branches get elected by Crimean Tatars as well,” Smedlyayev said.
According to Smedlyayev, it would be one thing if members of the Milli Mejlis are affected by the decision and quite another if it affects the entire organization. That is precisely why Lenmar Yunusov, Chairman of a Mejlis branch in Simferopol, filed a motion seeking to be allowed to be a party to the proceedings, i.e. a defendant.
“The judges have not made up their minds, yet. It is obvious they got a little confused sorting out all these legal intricacies. They are facing a dilemma of either banning only the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar people or, as I mentioned before, 370 Mejlis branches, which have 2,300 members,” he said.
Therefore, unless representatives of all Mejlis branches are made parties to the proceedings, no decision on recognizing them as terrorist or extremist organizations and thereby banning them can be made.