Jeroen Oerlemans

Simferopol, Ukraine

A man looks at a screen in the control room of the Crimean tatar TV Channel ATR. It is one of only a few Ukranian channels that have not been shut down by the authorities. Many local Tatars are guarding the channel to safeguard it from any interference.
Tatars have lived in Crimea for centuries but in 1944 Stalin punished the entire tatar population for collaboration wth the German occupiers by deporting them to Uzbekistan and other parts of the former Soviet Union, despite the fact that many of them fought in the Red Army. The Tatars were only permitted to return to Crimea in the late 1980s at which point they were given land which nobody else wanted. Many Tatars fear that they will be second class citizens again if Crimea joins Russia.

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Jeroen Oerlemans
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