On 14th day of November, 2017 the Credible Human Rights Organization “Human Rights Watch” published a report “Crimea: the Growth of Crimean Tatars’ Persecution, Arbitrary Detentions, Charges of Terrorism and Separatism”. This report recognizes an indigenous nature of Crimean Tatars for Crimea and describes a number of unlawful persecution of Crimean Tatars by the Russian occupation authorities.“Russian authorities in Crimea have relentlessly persecuted Crimean Tatars for their vocal opposition to Russia’s occupation since it began in 2014. They have portrayed politically active Crimean Tatars as extremists and terrorists, forced many into exile, and ensured that those who choose to stay never feel safe to speak their mind”, said director at Human Rights Watch, Europe and Central Asia.
“Human Rights Watch” demands from the UN Human Rights Office, the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), and the Council of Europe to continue to document and publicly report on the human rights situation in Crimea and urge Russian authorities to address both ongoing and past abuses. Russia’s international partners, including the European Union and its member states, Turkey, and the US should continue to call for the release of detained Crimean Tatar activists and for an end to the harassment and arbitrary actions against the Crimean Tatar community. As an occupying power, Russia should respect, unless absolutely prevented from doing so, Ukrainian laws that were in force in Crimea when it commenced its occupation. However, Russia rejects its status as an occupying power and applies its federal laws to Crimea, including criminalizing activity not previously criminalized on the peninsula. This notwithstanding, all relevant human rights treaties apply in Crimea, and all authorities, whether they are Russian or Crimean acting under Russian authority are bound by these treaties.
“Human Rights Watch” declares that its documented actions performed by the Russian Federation against Crimean Tatars violate their right to freedom of thought, speech, religion, meetings and rallies, the right not to be arbitrarily arrested and tortured, the right to a fair trial and to private life; such violations can be defined as a policy of persecution of Crimean Tatars. It is stated that “evidence” against Crimean Tatars in unlawful accusations do not prove their intention to take any acts of violence. These “evidences”, even in cases involving terrorist charges, are described solely by conversations during the meetings, interpretation of religious books or the assessment of Russia’s actions in Crimea, are based on the fact of possession of religious literature. “Human Rights Watch” states that such an equating of non-violent actions and statements to the acts of terrorism and extremism is an undue restriction of key human rights and is an application of system of criminal justice for political purposes.