State of the art technology on defending human rights from the Ombudsperson
As reported in the media (and here: http://khpg.org/adm.php?do=edit&id=1180428353 ), around 26 May the Human Rights Ombudspersons Secretariat informed Ukrainians that, “in order to increase parliamentary monitoring over adherence to the constitutional rights of citizens, in accordance with Article 101 of the Constitution and the Law “On democratic civil control over the military organization and law enforcement agencies of the country”, an Ombudspersons “helpline” has been established”.
“Citizens of Ukraine, including military servicemen, in the event of a violation of their constitutional rights or threat of such may ring the Human Rights Ombudspersons “helpline” which is working 24-hours on the lines: 253-75-89 or 253-80-04".
In Kyiv on 27 May there was a run in between football fans and officers of a special unit “Berkut”. The police detained 22 people on charges of resisting police commands.
The prosecutors office announced in the following days that a criminal investigation was to be held over excessive measures applied against fans.
We (together with many others) tried to ring the Ombudspersons helpline during those days. It was useless. During the day the lines were permanently engaged, and in the evening the 24-hour helpline was answered by a machine inviting us to leave a message after the beep.
Human rights protection via an answer machine would appear to be Ms Karpachovas latest know-how. It is however extremely difficult to imagine what kind of help this can provide a person who in an emergency rings a helpline …