The Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe has adopted the first separate decision since 2014 regarding the occupied Crimea. QHA brings the full text of the decision of May 3, according to the Council of Europe website.
Referring to their previous decisions concerning Ukraine,
Underlining that the illegal annexation of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol (Ukraine) by the Russian Federation challenges peace and democratic security in Europe,
Reaffirming their commitment to the principle of peaceful settlement of disputes, to the independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine within internationally recognised borders and to the respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms,
Recalling the UN General Assembly Resolution 71/205 of 19 December 2016 “Situation of human rights in the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol (Ukraine)”,
1. reiterated their condemnation of the illegal annexation of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol (Ukraine) by the Russian Federation, and stressed that it constitutes a violation of international law and cannot form the basis for any alteration of their status;
2. called on the Russian Federation to uphold all of its obligations under applicable international humanitarian law, international human rights law, including the European Convention on Human Rights, and the Council of Europe principles and standards;
3. urged the Russian Federation to take all measures necessary to respect human rights in Crimea and to bring an immediate end to all violations of these rights, including the denial of freedom of expression, freedom of peaceful assembly, freedom of religion and belief, discriminatory measures and practices, arbitrary detentions, torture and other cruel, inhumane or degrading treatment, and the repression against persons belonging to minorities, including the Crimean Tatars, as well as Ukrainians and persons belonging to other ethnic and religious groups;
4. called for a full, transparent and impartial investigation of all allegations of human rights abuses in order to bring those responsible to justice;
5. underlined that the court decision declaring the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar People an extremist organisation and banning its activities, and the decision banning leaders of the Mejlis from entering Crimea, gravely violated the rights of the Crimean Tatars and should be revoked;
6. emphasised that a safe and enabling environment for local and international media, human rights
defenders and non-governmental organisations should be put in place in Crimea, allowing for all opinions and views in society to be expressed without any discrimination, in line with the norms, principles and standards set out in the European Convention on Human Rights and other relevant Council of Europe instruments;
7. reiterated their call for full and unrestricted access to the Crimean peninsula for all human rights bodies of the Council of Europe, including the Commissioner for Human Rights, in order that they can carry out their monitoring activities unimpeded and in accordance with their mandates to urgently address deteriorations of human rights and fundamental freedoms; invited the Secretary General to continue the dialogue with all parties concerned to this end;
8. welcomed the efforts of the Secretary General to facilitate dialogue between the ombudspersons of Ukraine and the Russian Federation, and the subsequent transfer of a group of prisoners from Crimea;
9. invited the Commissioner for Human Rights of the Council of Europe to consider providing follow-up on his report based on the findings of his visit to Crimea in September 2014 and assess the current situation of human rights and fundamental freedoms on the peninsula;
10. called for full implementation of the UN General Assembly Resolution 71/205 of 19 December 2016 “Situation of human rights in the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol (Ukraine)”;
11. decided to come back to the situation in Ukraine in the autumn with a view to adopting a comprehensive decision, in light of the discussions on a new Action Plan for Ukraine.
May 4, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine noted that the decision adopted by the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe on the situation in the Crimea and Sevastopol is a serious contribution of the Council of Europe to ensuring democracy and security in the region.