47th session of the UN Human Rights Council
Interactive dialogue on High Commisioner for human rights oral report on Ukraine and interim report of Secretary-General on human rights in Crimea
Statement by Emine Dzhaparova,
First Deputy Foreign Minister of Ukraine
Geneva, 9 July 2021
I thank the Deputy High Commissioner for her update.
The OHCHR and the UN Secretary General reports show us the terrible consequences of the Russian aggression and occupation of Ukraine’s territories.
The testimonies of Russian hostages in occupied Donbas is like a horror book.
Beatings with sticks, suffocation, electrocution, penetrating injures, deprivation of basic needs, mock executions. This is not even a full list of cruel tortures applied to the hostages of ‘Izoliatsiia’ (isolation).
I am grateful to Stanislav Aseyev, who yesterday shared with us his personal story of surviving “Izoliatsiia. His book “The Torture Camp on Paradise Street” would further raise public awareness about this horrible place.
This concentration camp, as other secret prisons established by the Russian Federation across the Donbas region, has to be closed.
That is why we hope that the OHCHR will finally mention the Russian Federation, while expressing recommendations in its reports related to Donbas.
Further placing responsibility on Moscow-controlled proxies helps the Russian Federation to escape responsibility.
Also UN Secretary General report continues the story of tortures committed by the Russian occupying authorities, including FSB, in the occupied Crimea.
According to UN, the victims – and I quote: “described beatings, threats of physical and sexual violence, and deprivation of sleep and food. The pattern of impunity for torture committed by the occupation authorities persisted,” - end of quote. These are the methods used by the Russian Federation, a member of both – the UN Human Rights Council and the Council of Europe. Does Moscow believe that such behaviour is a proper one for a member of these organizations mandated to promote and protect human rights?
The Russian Federation persistently tries to distort the truth and impose its own false narratives of the origins of dire developments in Donbas and Crimea.
To that end, Moscow has unleashed a wide-scale disinformation campaign, including within this Council, to legitimize its proxies as well as to vilify Ukraine. Last week the Law on Indigenous People of Ukraine was adopted to strengthen the protection of those currently oppressed by the occupying Power in Crimea. No wonder that Moscow wants to discredit these efforts.
In the meantime, over 100 citizens of Ukraine, mostly Crimean Tatars, remain illegally detained under politically motivated charges in Crimea and Russia, They are sentenced from 14, as Volodymyr Dudka, to 16, 9 years in case of Enver Mamutov.
The lack of medical assistance is reported in the detention facilities. Today Valentyn Vyhivskyi, Servet Gaziev and Dzhemil Gafarov need our special attention.
Because of atmosphere of hate and fear, Ukrainian citizens continues to leave Crimea adding numbers to 1,5 IDPs who have already fled the Russian aggression.Russia spares no effort to erase Ukrainian and Crimean Tatar identity off the peninsula. The independent media on the peninsula have been silenced, their representatives are persecuted.
Since March 2021, Vladyslav Yesypenko, a freelancer for the Radio Free Europe, has been detained in Crimea under bogus charges. He was denied access to an independent lawyer for a month and declared torture. All these prove that the situation in Ukraine has to remain in focus of the Council.
To that end, Ukraine has submitted to the Council an updated resolution “Cooperation with and assistance to Ukraine in the field of human rights”.
We are grateful to all States who already cosponsored it and call upon others to join the list of cosponsors and support this document. Furthermore, increasing political, economic and sanction pressure remains a proper tool to encourage Russia to end its aggression and human rights violations.I also invite the UN Members to join the Crimea Platform, a new consultation and coordination mechanism to be launched in Kyiv on 23 August.
Ukraine has initiated the Crimea Platform platform to enhance the international response to Russia’s illegal occupation of Crimea. Your broad support for the Platform would send a powerful message about our resolve to protect international law, inviolability of internationally recognised borders and our common values – human rights and fundamental freedoms.
I thank you.