The Torture Camp on Paradise Street
Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures
Center on Democracy, Development and the Rule of Law
615 Crothers Way, Stanford, CA 94305
In The Torture Camp on Paradise Street, Ukrainian journalist and writer Stanislav Aseyev details his experience as a prisoner from 2015 to 2017 in a modern-day concentration camp overseen by the Federal Security Bureau of the Russian Federation (FSB) in the Russian-controlled city of Donetsk. This memoir recounts an endless ordeal of psychological and physical abuse, including torture and rape, inflicted upon the author and his fellow inmates over the course of nearly three years of illegal incarceration spent largely in the prison called Izoliatsiia (Isolation). Since February 2022, numerous cases of illegal detainment and extreme mistreatment have been reported in the Ukrainian towns and villages occupied by Russian forces during the full-scale invasion. These and other war crimes committed by Russian troops speak to the genocidal nature of Russia’s war on Ukraine and reveal the horrors wreaked upon Ukrainians forced to live in Russian-occupied zones. Aseyev’s account offers a critical insight into the operations of Russian forces in the occupied territories of Ukraine. Aseyev also reflects on how a human can survive such atrocities and reenter the world to share his story. The emphasis of the talk will be on the inhuman conditions that Russian and Russian-controlled forces subject people to on the territories controlled by them and on Aseyev’s own experience, particularly as described in the book.
Stanislav Aseyev. Donetsk-born Ukrainian writer and journalist. He is the author of a collection of poetry, a play, and a novel. Under the penname Stanislav Vasin, he published short reports in Ukrainian press about the situation on the ground following the outbreak of Russian-sponsored military hostilities in Donbas. Arrested and unlawfully imprisoned by separatist militia forces for “extremism” and “spying,” Aseyev was held captive and subjected to mistreatment and intermittent torture for over two and a half years.