Speaker of the US Ministry of Foreign Affairs John Kirby urged Russia to exclude the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar People from a list of extremist organizations and to lift a ban on its activities.

In his statement, Kirby recognizes the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar People a democratic and representative body of the Crimean Tatar people, who experienced repeated infringements throughout history. He also emphasized that the Mejlis should have an independent stance so that preserve the culture of the Crimean Tatar people and protect it from all kinds of discrimination.

- We urge the Russian Federation, in particular the Ministry of Justice, to revoke the recognition of the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar people as extremist organization, as well as lift the ban on the activities of the Crimean democratic structure, said John Kirby.

According to the Speaker, the ban on Mejlis contradicts the democratic principles:

- Russian authorities have no reason and powers to apply their laws to the self-government of the Crimean Tatars in Ukraine. We once again call on Russia to stop the annexation of Crimea and leave the Ukrainian land. The sanctions won’t be lifted until Russia stops occupation.

April 13, 2016, "the Prosecutor of Crimea" Natalia Poklonskaya suspended the activities of the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar people in Crimea and claimed the decision will be valid pending the verdict by the "Crimean Supreme Court."

April, 15 a hearing in the Mejlis ban was adjourned until April, 25. One of the reasons was the absence of the Mejlis Deputy Chairman Nariman Dzhelyal.

April 18, 2016 the Ministry of Justice has put the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar People on the list of public and religious organizations banned due to extremist activities.

Photo: Internet