Comments of the MFA of Ukraine on the Fourteenth Report of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights on the results of work of the United Nations Human Rights Monitoring Mission in Ukraine for 16 February - 15 May 2016
On June 3 the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) released the 14th Report on the human rights situation in Ukraine based on the results of work of the UN Monitoring Mission in Ukraine (HRMMU), during February 16 - May 15, 2016.
The 14th OHCHR report once again confirms “the influx from Russia of foreign fighters, including citizens of the Russian Federation, ammunition and heavy weaponry”. The mission documented massive crimes committed by occupying Russian authorities against our citizens in Crimea and by the Russian military alongside their allies in the Donbas region. The mission once again ascertained that Ukrainian citizens daily suffer from continued criminal activities such as killings of civilians, kidnappings, torture, sexual violence, forced labor, extortion and other human rights violations.
Presenting the report in Kyiv ASG for Human Rights Ivan Šimonović noted, that the main prerequisite for the local elections in the certain territories of Donetsk and Luhansk regions was the restoration of political and civil rights of local residents.
We support this position of the OHCHR and urge the international community to increase pressure on the Russian Federation with the aim to stop immediately supporting terrorist organizations “DNR” and “LNR”.
We agree with the report’s conclusion regarding the relevance of the Minsk agreements and the importance of their implementation to stop massive human rights violations.
The situation in the occupied Crimea remains extremely difficult, especially taking into account the ban of Mejlis and a rising wave of persecution that followed. Abductions, searches, illegal detentions, beatings, limitations of freedom of speech and freedom of assembly, and other basic civil rights have become commonplace on the peninsula.
We once again demand that the occupation authorities of the Russian Federation would allow access of the international human rights monitoring missions to the peninsula, raise a ban of the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar people, investigate all allegations of ill-treatment, torture, abductions and disappearances, identify and ensure that those responsible to be held accountable. OHCHR also calls upon the Russian Federation in its recommendations.
Ukraine's position remains unchanged - all human rights violations regardless of who committed them and where - must not go unpunished. In this regard, we appreciate that the Mission brought to attention the reports of possible abuses and violations committed by the armed forces of Ukraine and we are thoroughly scrutinizing them. It should be noted that OHCHR did not bypass the efforts of the Government of Ukraine to prosecute the perpetrators of human rights violations.
The report also positively evaluated extensive reforms and noted the ongoing process of formation of legal field in Ukraine.
Ukraine has always considered the HRMMU work as an important integral part in confronting Russian aggression and effective tool of documenting human rights violations by occupation authorities in Crimea and crimes committed by the Russian army and illegal armed groups in certain areas of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions.
The Ukrainian side expects that the international community will enforce pressure on Russia to ensure immediate cessation of acts of aggression against our country, the withdrawal of the Russian Armed Forces from the Ukrainian territory, suspension of arms and military equipment supplies to terrorist mercenaries, abolition of any acts aimed at the legitimization of the illegal annexation of the Crimean peninsula, and its de-occupation.