On 15 April 2021, ODF co-hosted an online conference on the new EU Global Human Rights Sanctions Regime and the effectiveness of personal (targeted) sanctions in safeguarding human rights. The event was co-organised in partnership with the Italian Federation for Human Rights, the Crimean Tatar Resource Center, Freedom Kazakhstan Foundation and the Global Committee for […]
- Arbitrary detentions
- Mass detentions
- Freedom of speech
- Civil liberties
- Freedom of assembly
- Freedom of association
- Freedom of religion
- Rule of law
- Hate speech and hate crimes
- Prisoners' rights
- Political prisoners
- Political refugees
- Expulsions and entry bans
- Fair trial
- Political persecution
- Death penalty
- Punitive psychiatry
- Schengen Information System
- COVID-19 pandemic
- Rights of soldiers and veterans
- Humanitarian aid
- International law
- Magnitsky Act
- Selective justice
- Judiciary independence
- Persecution of lawyers
- Polish-Ukrainian relations
- Law enforcement and security
- Enforced disappearances
- War crimes
Yesterday, 3 November 2020, Vitaly Markiv, a Ukrainian former National Guard and holder of an Italian passport, was found “not guilty” of the charge of murder of Italian journalist Andrea Rocchelli. The reporter and his translator, Andrei Mironov, tragically died as a result of a mortar shelling in Sloviansk on 24 May 2014. At that time, the conflict zone was controlled by Russia-backed separatists.
This report includes, among else, direct observations made during a human rights monitoring mission to Ukraine in the period between 16–19 March 2019. The mission was held at the invitation of representatives of Ukrainian civil society. The mission visited Odessa and Kyiv, where a number of meetings were held with civil society activists, human rights activists, experts, relatives of Ukrainian political prisoners in Russia, political refugees, Ukrainian officials, and diplomats accredited in the country. In addition to the meetings, the mission participants monitored a peaceful protest in Odessa on 16 March, 2019 and attended a round table in the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine on 18 March 2019.
We have always strived to fight against mis- and disinformation and thus counter threats to the proper functioning of democracies, including the rule of law and the independence of the judiciary. For this reason we have supported the making of “The Wrong Place”, a documentary on the so-called Markiv Case, in which two journalists were killed in Donbas in 2014.
On May 26, 2020, seven MEPs addressed Ukrainian President Zelensky, Prosecutor General Iryna Venediktova and the Head of the State Migration Service Maksym Sokoliuk with an appeal demanding the reevaluation of Zhanara Akhmetova’s asylum application and halting her extradition. Ms Akhmetova – a Kazakhstani journalist and oppositionist – and her 12-year-old son risk deportation from Ukraine as a consequence of the Supreme Court’s decision on May 14, 2020, which overturned its previous instance and rejected her asylum application.
A prominent Kazakhstani journalist and opposition activist Zhanara Akhmetova could be illegally extradited from Ukraine to Kazakhstan at any time. According to our sources, the Prosecutor General’s Office of Ukraine is already preparing to place her under extradition arrest. On 19 May 2020, Akhmetova got a decision by the Supreme Court of Ukraine depriving her of the chance to be granted asylum. The decision was adopted in haste during the quarantine. It was also adopted without taking into account the arguments of Akhmetova’s lawyers.
On May 14, 2020, the decision to grant asylum to a prominent Kazakhstani journalist and oppositionist, Zhanara Akhmetova, and her 12-year-old son, was reversed by the Supreme Court of Ukraine, acting as a last instance court. Akhmetova is one of the leaders of the country’s biggest opposition movement “Democratic Choice of Kazakhstan”.
On May 14, 2020, the Supreme Court of Ukraine, acting as a last instance court, reversed the decision of the previous instance and declined to grant asylum to a prominent Kazakhstani journalist and oppositionist, Zhanara Akhmetova. The hearing was held without the presence of Akhmetova’s attorney. Akhmetova can be extradited to Kazakhstan anytime. If extradited, she faces torture and unfair trial. With all avenues for appeal having been formally exhausted, it is only the international community that can block the unlawful expulsion.
We, human rights and civic organizations, urge the Ukrainian Parliament to restrain from providing police powers to the National Guard of Ukraine by adopting the bill # 3105. We call the Parliament to reject it.
We, human rights organisations, call upon law enforcement authorities to investigate fairly the circumstances of attacks on Serhiy Sternenko. We would also ask politicians, officials and other parties not involved in the proceedings to refrain from interfering in the investigation.
On 11 December 2019 in Kyiv, within the framework of the IV National Human Rights Non-Conference, a discussion was held on the topic: “Are there any threats to Ukraine from China and how can they be minimised?”. The event was organised by the Open Dialogue Foundation in collaboration with the Ukrainian Free Hong Kong Centre, the Qaharman Human Rights Initiative (Kazakhstan) and the Human Rights Agenda. The discussion was moderated by human rights defender Maksym Sytnikov (Open Dialogue Foundation).
On 10 December 2019, in Kyiv, a discussion was held on the topic: “How to protect political refugees from illegal extraditions and misuse of interstate legal assistance?”. The event was held as part of the 4th National Human Rights Non-Conference. The Open Dialogue Foundation, the Right to Protection Charitable Foundation, the Kharkov Institute of Social Studies, and the Human Rights Agenda Coalition were among the organisers of the event.
Between Monday 16 and Friday 27 September 2019, representatives of the Open Dialogue Foundation Xheni Dani, Joanna Cuper and Maksym Sytnikov participated in the annual OSCE Human Dimension Implementation Meeting held in Warsaw. Our representatives delivered several statements in which they raised is
Oleg Sentsov, former political prisoner gave his first speech abroad, in Berlin, after being released from Russian prison on September 7. To this purpose, on September 26, Frank Schwabe MP and Manuel Sarazzin MP welcomed Sentsov and our delegation to a parliamentary event at the Bundestag.
On September 27, 2019, Oleg Sentsov thanked the Poles and those who from the very beginning defended not only him, but all Ukrainians imprisoned in Russia and its occupied territories.