UK notes "under-reported facet" of violence in eastern Ukraine

15:59, 22 March 2017
Politics
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The UK Mission to the United Nations Geneva has pointed out to an "under-reported facet" of violations of human rights, including conflict-related sexual violence, in Russia-occupied Donbas.

REUTERS

"The UK welcomes the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) thematic report into conflict-related sexual violence, which highlights an under-reported facet of events in eastern Ukraine, and we condemn the ongoing impunity for perpetrators of these crimes," the UK Mission said in a statement delivered during the 34th session of the Human Rights Council in Geneva on March 22, 2017.

"We also welcome the 17th OHCHR report, which shows a continuing trend of high civilian casualties in eastern Ukraine – 130, including children, killed or wounded since November 2016. The recent fighting around Avdiyivka, and the humanitarian situation it caused is particularly concerning. Thousands of people were left without water, electricity or heating in the depths of winter," the statement said.

Read alsoUkraine speaks up at UN: Russia continues sponsoring Donbas terrorists"We again echo OHCHR's call to protect civilians. The ongoing development of parallel structures in separatist areas is deeply worrying, as is OHCHR's assertion that 'sentences' passed by them amount to war crimes," it said.

The report again details the degradation of human rights in Crimea since Russia's illegal annexation, including the use of torture, forced psychiatric internment and the transfer of Ukrainian citizens into prisons in the Russian Federation.

Read alsoFSB resorts to mafia-style threats against Crimean Tatar detainee in occupied Crimea"It is extremely worrying that some of those moved into Russia may have died from negligent treatment. The de facto authorities continue to deny international monitoring organizations access in order to prevent an independent assessment of the human rights situation," it said.

"We call on the Russian Federation to grant access, in line with UN General Assembly resolution 71/205, and the mandates of these organizations, including the OHCHR," the UK Mission said.

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