International Community called upon to defend the Crimean Tatars
People gathered outside the only Crimean Tatar TV Channel ATR on March 31 hours before Russia forced it off air
On May 14 Ukraine’s Verkhovna Rada adopted a resolution urging international bodies and all members of the international community to condemn ongoing violations of Crimean Tatar rights. The resolution, drawn up by, among others, Mustafa Dzhemiliev, veteran Crimean Tatar leader exiled from his homeland after Russia’s annexation, was supported by 247 parliamentarians.
The Verkhovna Rada demands that the Russian Federation put an immediate stop to policy aimed at violating human rights and civil liberties in Crimea, in particular the rights of the Crimean Tatars as indigenous people of Ukraine. It calls on the international community to condemn both the forced Deportation of the Crimean Tatar People by the Soviet communist regime on May 18, 1944 and the current actions of Russia in violating Crimean Tatar rights.
It also urges all world leaders and public figures to make all necessary efforts to protect Crimean Tatars from discrimination and persecution by Russia.
The resolution also asks the international community to support the renewed work of international monitoring missions.
It particularly calls for maximum efforts from the international community to restore the violated rights of Mustafa Dzhemiliev, Refat Chubarov - head of the Mejlis or Crimean Tatar representative assembly; Sinaver Kadyrov - co-founder of the Crimean Tatar Human Rights Committee; and Ismet Yuksel - owner of the QHA Crimean News Agency and adviser to the Mejlis.
Russia is called on to release Khaiser Dzhemiliev, son of Mustafa Dzhemiliev who is being illegally held and tried in Russia, as well as the Deputy Head of the Mejlis Akhtem Chiygoz, and civic activists Ali Asanov; Mustafa Degermendzhi; Eskender Nebiyev and Talyat Yunusov.
The resolution comes on the eve of the seventy first anniversary of the 1944 Deportation of the entire Crimean Tatar people. Traditional remembrance gatherings have been banned again, as they were in 2014, shortly after Russia annexed Crimea (see: "New format" for clamp on remembrance of Crimean Tatar Deportation )
Please see the following for more details about the ever-increasing repressive measures against Crimean Tatars under Russian occupation.
Information in particular about the detention of the Deputy Head of the Mejlis Akhtem Chiygoz and others mentioned can be found here: Chillingly Soviet: Imprisonment without a Crime in Crimea
There is any amount of information on this site about grave violations of the rights of the Crimean Tatar people, and whole reports have been produced by international NGOs.
Yet we still hear high-ranking representatives of western countries (including just days ago US Secretary of State John Kerry) talking about withdrawing sanctions against Russia if the Minsk Accords – which do not even mention Crimea – are implemented.
Parliament’s call, together with that of the Mejlis and other Crimean Tatar bodies, urgently need to be heeded and acted upon with more than just expresses of concern.