Representatives of state and law enforcement agencies, public organizations jointly held a professional discussion on the issue and implementation of steps to return convicted Ukrainian citizens to the territory controlled by Ukraine.
First Deputy Permanent Representative of the President of Ukraine in the Autonomous Republic of Crimea Daria Svyrydova noted the importance of protecting the rights of persons deprived of their liberty on the temporarily occupied peninsula, as well as the challenges related to its solution.
Also, according to the Strategy of the Mission of the President of Ukraine in the Autonomous Republic of Crimea approved in April this year by the Decree of the President of Ukraine №160/2021, among the priorities are measures to protect Ukrainian citizens deprived of personal liberty in connection with the Russian armed aggression and informing international partners about facts of violations of human rights and fundamental freedoms.
Moreover, the representatives of the Prosecutor’s Office of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol said that the Prosecutor’s Office of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea qualifies such actions of the occupying state as a war crime, under Part 1 of Art. 438 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine (violation of the laws and customs of war), as they are a serious violation of the IV Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War of 1949.
In 2014, 5 institutions of the State Penitentiary Service of Ukraine with 3,258 detainees were located on the territory of the occupied Crimea. During the pre-trial investigation, 464 citizens of Ukraine were identified who were illegally transferred to serve their sentences in the territory of the Russian Federation. In addition, relocations have taken place in remote areas, leading to the severance of prisoners’ family ties, the threat of their being in inappropriate conditions, the inability to receive the necessary medical care in a timely manner, lack of access to effective mechanisms on protection of their rights, etc.
As a result of the meeting, the participants made a list of proposals that will be further agreed and developed in the relevant actions of the Regional Center for Human Rights.
Photo by the Prosecutor’s Office of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol