UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has released a report alleging human rights abuses in Russia’s annexed Crimea. The Permanent Representative of Ukraine to the UN Serhiy Kyslytsia informed about it.

“In the report of the UN Secretary-General, the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol are clearly defined as the territories of Ukraine temporarily occupied by the Russian Federation. In addition, it is noted that Russia continues to apply its criminal law in the occupied territories. Such actions are another violation of international humanitarian law by the occupier,” the diplomat stressed.

According to him, the UN Secretary-General pointed out that the occupying power does not provide access to the peninsula for the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights to conduct monitoring.

Kyslytsia noted that the Secretary-General’s report indicated specific facts of violations of the rights of defendants and the absence of impartial public proceedings in the annexed Crimea. For example, detainees are not allowed to meet with Ukrainian consuls and are not given adequate protection.

Separately, Guterres alleged torture and forcible transfer of defendants and convicted Crimeans to the territory of neighboring Russia. Searches and raids are also reported, especially among Crimean Tatars. Freedom of assembly, freedom of speech, and religious rights are violated on the peninsula.

Kyslytsia expressed hope that this report would become an “auxiliary tool” of international pressure on the Russian Federation to deoccupy Crimea and bring it to justice.

We will remind, earlier the Council of the European Union approved prolongation for one more year of the sanctions against the Russian Federation imposed after the annexation of the Crimea.

Bohdan Marusyak

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