Sep 22, 2016

Crimean Tatars: Ukraine Highlights Severe Repressions at HRC

Photo courtesy of the Ukrainian Ministry of Foreign Affairs

In a statement at the 33rd session of the United Nations Human Rights Council, the Permanent Representative of Ukraine Yurii Klymenko spoke about the violation of the Crimean Tatars’ fundamental rights during a dialogue on the rights of indigenous peoples. Drawing attention to the 2014 annexation of Crimea, deemed illegal by the international community, Klymenko went into detail about the harsh repression the community has faced since then, under the control of Russian authorities.

The statement below is courtesy of the Ukrainian Ministry of Foreign Affairs


The Ukrainian delegation took the floor to once again draw attention to the illegal and inhuman actions by the Russian Federation towards the citizens of Ukraine unlawfully kept by this state on its territory and in the occupied parts of Ukraine. Dozens of them are being persecuted in the occupied Crimea, 16 are considered missing, at least 29 - unlawfully kept in custody.

 “Mr. President,

We welcome conducting this dialogue with both the Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples and EMRIP, as Ukraine is extremely concerned over the systematic violation of the fundamental human rights and freedoms of Crimean Tatars, recognized in Ukraine as indigenous people, by the Russian occupying authorities of Crimea.


From the very beginning of the illegal annexation of the peninsula Crimean Tatars have been subjected to abductions, illegal detentions and imprisonments; they have continued to experience severe limitations in the freedom of speech, religion, assembly and association. Any democratic manifestations have been interpreted as extremist actions; numerous representatives of the Crimean Tatar people have been prohibited to entry the territory of the peninsula – their native land.

 One of the most outrageous cases, lately happened, was the detention of the Deputy Chairman of the Mejlis of Crimean Tatars Ilmi Umerov who was placed in the psychiatric clinic last month – and deprived of his life-essential medications - after being charged with separatism for making public statement denying that Crimea was a part of Russia – the statement, which is in full conformity with the General Assembly resolution 68/262. Unfortunately, this case is just one in the series proving the existence of real threats to life for the Crimean Tatars from the occupying authorities.

 We continue to insist that the Russian Federation must allow full and unimpeded access to Crimea for the international human rights mechanisms, including for special procedures on indigenous peoples.

 Thank you.”