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today 28.01.2015 08:31
(by Kyiv time)


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News from the CIS countries

Russian activists jailed for demanding Nadiya Savchenko’s release

28.01.15 | Halya Coynash
On the eve of a Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe [PACE] debate on whether to reinstate the Russian delegation’s credentials, Ukrainian MP and PACE delegate Nadiya Savchenko is on the 46th day of her hunger strike in Russian detention and a number of people in Moscow have been jailed for up to 45 days in connection with a peaceful protest demanding Savchenko’s release.
News from the CIS countries

Record number of Russians ‘positive’ about Joseph Stalin

Less than 8 years after Russian President Vladimir Putin publicly encouraged ‘positive moves’ in the presentation of the country’s history, a Levada Centre opinion poll has found 52% of Russians viewing Joseph Stalin in a positive light, the highest rating for the bloody dictator since such questions were asked. Only 30% see him in a negative light.
Freedom of expression

Armed Offensive against Independent Crimean Tatar TV Channel

27.01.15 | Halya Coynash 
Monday’s armed search of TV ATR was the most dramatic, but not the only offensive against the only Crimean Tatar TV channel since Russia annexed Crimea in March 2014 and appears part of mounting efforts to intimidate, silence or banish Crimean Tatars
We remember

70th Anniversary of the Liberation of Auschwitz: “Politicization of this place is unthinkable”

On this 70th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau, it will be survivors who are heard, not politicians. Around 300 former prisoners are expected to attend, and the ceremony this year centres around them. No ‘snubs’, no political scandals, simply recognition of a day when politicians should fall silent.
News from the CIS countries

Why has Nadiya Savchenko not been freed? Demand that Russia answers!

26.01.15 | Halya Coynash 
How can Nadiya Savchenko, captured by Kremlin-backed militants in Ukraine, be in RUSSIAN detention? How can we believe that she will get a fair trial when the investigators and the court are ignoring an irrefutable alibi? Please help tweet these and other questions on Nadiya Savchenko’s FORTY FIFTH day on hunger strike.
The right to life

Russia is Abetting War Crimes: Ratify Rome Statute Now!

26.01.15 | Halya Coynash 
“As of Jan 24, 2015 there are all the signs that an aggressive war is being waged against Ukraine in the understanding of international criminal law (including judgments from the Nuremberg and Tokyo Tribunals)".
Deported peoples

Russia in no hurry to answer for its Soviet-type bans on Dzhemiliev and Yuksel

Two court hearings over appeals lodged against bans imposed since Russia’s annexation of Crimea on people linked with the Crimean Tatar Mejlis, or representative assembly, have been postponed.
Deported peoples

Crimean Tatar rights activist ‘deported’ from his native Crimea

24.01.15 | Halya Coynash 
The Crimean authorities under Russian rule have ‘deported’ Sinaver Kadyrov, a Crimean Tatar activist with Ukrainian citizenship, Crimean registration, but with views and a concern over human rights violations that the occupation regime clearly finds inconvenient. The message this sends any Crimean is chilling.
The right to life

Sinister Remake: Blood and POW Humiliation for the Cameras

23.01.15 | Halya Coynash 
On disturbing echoes in the bus shelling and humiliating parade of Ukrainian POWs in Donetsk on Jan 22 - from the inaccurate“13 passengers killed” which Kremlin-backed militants and Russian media kept pushing to draw associations with Volnovakha to the remake of the shameful POW march on Independence Day, this time staged on Ukrainian Unity Day.
Freedom of expression

Crimean librarian fined for ‘anti-Russian’ books about Holodomor

23.01.15 | Halya Coynash
In the latest example of Russia’s dangerously broad anti-extremism legislation, the director of a Feodosiya library, now under Russian occupation, has been fined for holding books about the Ukrainian Holodomor, or manmade Famine of 1932/33
News from the CIS countries

Memorial declares Oleg Navalny a political prisoner

The three-year sentence passed on Oleg Navalny has been widely seen as hostage-taking and an attempt to stifle his brother – leading political opposition figure Alexei Navalny. Memorial’s stand only strengthens this view.
We remember

Day of Ukrainian Unity and Remembrance for the First Maidan Victims

One year ago today two Maidan activists - Serhiy Nihoyan and Mikhail Zhyznevsky - were shot and killed on Hrushevsky St in Kyiv. On that same January 22 - Ukrainian Unity Day - Roman Senyk received fatal injuries, dying several days later, and Yury Verbytsky was left to die in a forest after being subjected to horrific torture. Nobody has been held to answer for any of these deaths.
News from the CIS countries

PACE: Nadiya Savchenko’s health is critical, release her now!

22.01.15 | Halya Coynash 
The President of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe [PACE] has asked Russia’s State Duma Speaker for help in securing Nadiya Savchenko’s urgent release. The imprisoned former pilot, Ukrainian MP and PACE delegate has been on hunger strike for 39 days and has rejected even her sister’s call for her to end it
Army, Politics and human rights, Implementation of European Law

Ukraine’s leaders broaden mobilization while refusing to declare state of war

22.01.15 | Halya Coynash 
Failure to officially acknowledge what Ukrainians have been living with since the Spring of 2014 can only arouse distrust and questions about who benefits by not declaring a state of war in which Russia, not isolated ‘terrorists’, is the main aggressor.
Deported peoples

Another Crimean Tatar arrested and beaten over May 3 Dzhemiliev protest

Edem Osmanov whose father earned fame and gratitude last December when he cooked pilaf for freezing EuroMaidan protesters has become the fifth Crimean Tatar to be facing dubious charges over the peaceful protest on May 3 when veteran Crimean Tatar leader Mustafa Dzhemiliev was prevented from entering his homeland.



Nadiya Savchenko will not end her hunger strike nor let them break her spirit

Halya Coynash
Nadiya Savchenko has passed a letter via her lawyers to all those concerned for her fate in which she thanks everybody but rejects pleas for her to end her hunger strike. It is the only way she has to seek justice and she is adamant that she will not eat until the day of her return to Ukraine – or the last day of her life in Russian prison

Report on the human rights mission to the Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts

Lyudmila Klochko, Kharkiv Human Rights Protection Group

The Kharkiv Human Rights Protection Group [KHPG], together with the German NGO ‘European Exchange’ and representatives of NGOs from the Russian Federation and Germany with the support of the German Foreign Ministry, carried out an international mission to monitor human rights in the Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts on territory which is back under Ukrainian control.

Russian secret trial to convict opponents of Crimean annexation

Halya Coynash
More details have emerged of the secrecy behind the closed trial of Gennady Afanasyev whose testimony is the only ‘evidence’ in the ‘Crimean terrorist plot’ case and may be used to get renowned Ukrainian film director Oleg Sentsov and left-wing activist Oleksandr Kolchenko 20 year sentences

European-style Police Force: Strategy for Reform

Oleh Martynenko, Yevhen Zakharov
For the first time in 18 years the government has adopted a package of proposals for reforming the Interior Ministry, and most importantly a Police Reform Development Strategy written by human rights activists

80-year-old Crimean Tatar summoned for ‘questioning’ by Russian FSB

Halya Coynash
Veteran of the Crimean Tatar national movement Vedzhie Kashka turned 80 recently and should have been admitted to hospital on Dec 10 over a heart condition. She couldn’t because she had been summonsed for questioning by the FSB [Russian Security Service].

Missing, believed denounced: hundreds held prisoner by Kremlin-backed militants

Halya Coynash
The Soviet echoes in the prevailing atmosphere of fear and intimidation in Donbas are most chillingly seen in the widespread use of ‘denunciations’ with accusations as empty, but potentially fatal as in Stalin’s times.

In Memory: Yevhen Sverstyuk 1928 – 2014

We mourn together with family and friends the passing of Yevhen Sverstvyuk, Ukrainian writer, thinker and civic figure, a man who spent years in the Soviet labour camps for his commitment to truth and to Ukraine and who became a moral beacon for very many in Ukraine and beyond.