Special bodies for the search for missing persons as a result of the conflict in Donbass were created in the Donetsk and Luhansk People’s Republic. The appropriate Acts were signed by the Head of the DPR Denis Pushilin and the Head of the LPR Leonid Pasechnik. This allows triggering search activities in Donbass with the consolidation of the efforts of all specialized bodies for the realization of the most important issues from among humanitarian ones. Also, this contributes to the procedural determining of events over the loss of lives, and to bringing perpetrators to justice.
The decision of the Heads of the Republics became a logical continuation of the numerous appeals of missing persons’ relatives with the requests to ascertain the fate of their loved ones and to perpetuate the memory of the victims of the Ukrainian aggression. Since it is not possible to achieve even the slightest progress in this direction within the Minsk platform due to sabotage from Kiev, the DPR and LPR are taking their own alternative actions.
Thus, “The interdepartmental commission for the search for missing persons, burial places of remains of deceased in areas of the armed conflict in Donbass”, headed by the Human Rights Ombudsman in the DPR Daria Morozova, started its work in the DPR.
The same functions are performed in the LPR by “The interdepartmental working group for the search of burial places of victims of the Ukrainian aggression, their identification and the perpetuation of the memory” under the leadership of the First Deputy Foreign Minister Anna Soroka.
The newly created bodies consist of law enforcement officers, human rights defenders, representatives of the search groups and forensic doctors. The priorities included:
- formation of a unified register of persons missing as a result of the armed conflict in Donbass (both military personnel and civilians);
- identification of burial places;
- organization of exhumation works;
- identification of the remains of the deceased;
- facilitating the return of remains to relatives and a dignified burial;
- perpetuation of the memory of the victims.
Today, on 9 August 2021, in Donetsk, the Heads of the DPR and LPR Interdepartmental bodies for the search for missing persons held the first joint briefing.
“Disappearance is a tragic consequence of the armed conflict in Donbass. The fates of hundreds of people on both sides of the Contact line have not been ascertained. The suffering that their relatives feel because of ignorance, according to the position of the UN Human Rights Committee, is considered as ill-treatment and torture. It is our duty to help the families of the missing persons. It is for this that the Republics of Donbass are consolidating the efforts of all specialized departments today,” Daria Morozova stressed.
In turn, Anna Soroka noted that the work on the identification of the remains of the deceased and the formation of registers of persons missing as a result of the armed conflict in Donbass have been ongoing since the first days of the military conflict unleashed by Ukraine. The newly formed bodies will help coordinate the activities carried out by various departments in this direction, unify legal and regulatory instruments, combine and structure the developed database.
“The Republics of Donbass always stand side by side against the Ukrainian military aggression. Crimes against peace, humanity, genocide – all this was brought by Ukraine to the land of Donbass. Realizing the inevitability of punishment, Ukraine is trying to evade responsibility by levelling the universal principles of humanity. The creation of a unified base of missing persons as a result of the armed conflict in Donbass, the identification of burial places and the subsequent identification of the remains of the victims, I am sure, will strengthen the evidentiary basis against Ukrainian war criminals,” Anna Soroka emphasized.
Daria Morozova and Anna Soroka called all residents of the DPR, LPR, Donbass territories temporarily controlled by Kiev, as well as other states with an appeal to provide any data that may help in the search for missing persons.
There are special “hot” lines for feedback, where relatives and witnesses can contact.
The telephone number in the DPR: (071) 404-69-29.
The telephone number in the LPR: (072) 216-80-30.
You can also send a request in writing.
E-mail address in the DPR: firstname.lastname@example.org
E-mail address in the LPR: email@example.com