Ecology problems have become the most urgent on the Earth,
above war and destructive force of nature.
This is the new universal problem
that humanity has never faced before
Declaration of the United Nations Conference on the Human Environment proclaims the right of a person to adequate conditions of life, in an environment of a quality that permits a life of dignity and well-being, and bears the primary responsibility for protecting and improving the environment for the benefit of present and future generations.
According to Geneva Convention of 12 August 1949, it is prohibited to use methods or means of warfare that are intended to cause or, as may be expected, will cause extensive, long-term and serious damage to the natural environment.
The armed conflict, unleashed by Kiev authorities in Donbass, causes almost daily damage to environment of the Donetsk region, its infrastructure and natural resources.
Article 55 of the Protocol Additional to Geneva Conventions prescribes that care is taken to protect the natural environment from extensive, long-term and serious damage when conducting military operations. The means of protection include prohibition of the use of methods or means of warfare that are intended to cause or, as may be expected, will cause such damage to the natural environment and thereby harm the health or threaten survival of the population.
Unfortunately, the Ukrainian side is not concerned with the implementation of international humanitarian law. The destruction of industrial enterprises, which the region is famous with, due to the constant shelling by Ukrainian forces, not only has economic effects, but also poses a threat to the environmental situation in the Republic.
On 17 February the Head of the Republic approved «Humanitarian program for the reunification of the people of Donbass». The document was presented in Minsk meeting and it has been endorsed by the OSCE representative Toni Frisch.
One of the objectives of this program is to ensure environmental safety of Donbass, aimed at preventing and reducing the current negative impact on the environment.
“Being the DPR Ombudsman, I speak in defense of the right of the inhabitants of the region to favorable living conditions in the environment.
I want to recall the norms of international humanitarian law providing for the protection of the natural environment from extensive, long-term and serious damage due to the hostilities. I would like to emphasize that in accordance with the Protocol Additional to the Geneva Conventions, civilian objects should not be objects of armed aggression” – said the DPR Ombudsman Daria Morozova following the meeting in Minsk format.
Citizens can apply to the Ombudsman in any suitable way. Now, the majority of applications is still verbal and made through private meeting either with the Ombudsman or the heads of the Office, addressing the Appeals department, via hotlines and via web-reception on the Website of the Ombudsman. There is a possibility to file a written complaint that may be submitted either in person or via e-mail. Since 2017 the Ombudsman received 858 appeals. Between 19 February and 3 March 2017 16 persons have visited the Ombudsman in person 32 of the claims were accepted by the Appeals department, 56 calls were made via hotlines, 41 applications were received via e-mail. 13 written applications were taken into consideration, 5 have been considered among those received earlier, 58 DPR citizens were provided with legal consultation.
All appeals received can be divided into four categories: violations in criminal law – 32 appeals, violations in civil law– 91 appeals, administrative and legal violations against the DPR citizens, social and humanitarian issues – 735 appeals (diagram 1).
The number of appeals (complaints, applications) from citizens, submitted to the Office of DPR Ombudsman as of 18.02.2017
Violations in criminal law
Violations in civil law
Administrative and legal violations against citizens
Issues of social and humanitarian affairs
Among all incoming correspondence to the Ombudsman of DPR, the one which deals with the issues of exercise of social rights of citizens and violations of these rights is the most frequent. These issues are: pension and social payments – 91 appeals, accommodation for temporary residence – 171 appeals, the order of a complaint submission and paperwork in case of property destruction – 22 appeals, the receipt of humanitarian assistance – 7 appeals, employment – 27 appeals, paperwork on travelling documents – 3 appeals, search of the missing – 37 appeals, loss of IDs – 84 appeals, housing issues – 51 appeals, receipt of temporary residence permit – 34 appeals, other social and humanitarian issues – 208 appeals (diagram 2).
The number of appeals (complaints, applications) from citizens on social and humanitarian isses, received by the DPR Ombudsman`s Office as of 18.03.2017
Pension and social payments
Search of the missing soldiers
Search of the missing civilians
Temporary residence permit
Paperwork in case of property destruction
Paperwork on travelling documents
Loss of IDs
Other social and humanitarian issues
The majority of complains are traditionally received from Donetsk, by territory (Diagram 3).
The number of appeals (complains, applications) from citizens, received by the DPR Ombudsman`s Office as of 18.03.2017
- Statistics and analysis of destroyed infrastructure objects
Targeted shelling by Ukrainian forces that cause destruction of private property and infrastructure – this is how looks the reality of the front-line regions of the Donetsk People’s Republic. The Ukrainian forces target water supply facilities. As a result of shelling of Donetsk filtering station, residents of several districts of the capital of the region are periodically left without water supply. Another result of the Ukrainian provocative attacks is power cuts in the south of the Republic. Ukrainian forces deliberately destroy objects that provide citizens of the Republic with water, electricity and gas. Other infrastructure objects have also been targeted.
As of 2 March 2017 more than 11211 infrastructure objects have been damaged (destroyed) as a result of hostilities.
More than 6766 objects have been destroyed in Donetsk, 268 units in Debaltsevo, 521 units in Gorlovka, 68 units in Dokuchayevsk, 291 units in Yenakievo, 91 units in Zhdanovka, 72 units in Kirovskoye, 1068 units in Makeyevka, 54 units in Snyezhnoye, 118 units in Torez, 747 units in Khartsysk, 74 units in Shakhtyorsk, 574 units in Yasynovataya, 277 units in Amvrosyevka region, 3 units in Volnovakha region, 24 units in Maryinka region, 17 units in Novoazovsk region, 52 units in Starobeshevo region, 93 units in Telmanovo region, 33 units in Shakhtyorsk region.
Destroyed objects by branches:
– 6131 houses;
– 760 power lines and points of distribution of electricity;
– 174 heating supply facilities;
– 48 water supply facilities;
– 2669 gas supply facilities;
– 11 wastewater disposal and sewerage facilities;
– 101 healthcare facilities;
– 490 general educational institutions (schools, kindergartens);
– 54 vocational and technical educational institutions ;
– 54 higher educational institutions;
– 25 physical and sport education institutions;
– 53 cultural institutions;
– 237 road and transport infrastructure objects;
– 58 industrial objects;
– 88 trade objects;
– 258 objects in other spheres.
According to the official data as of 30th January 2017 there are 2766 units of governmental and communal ownership damaged, 427 – rebuilt and 2339 – are to be rebuilt.
- Estimates of mortality, wounds to civilians and soldiers as a result of hostilities in the territory of the Donetsk People’s Republic.
Almost every day the DPR Ombudsman’s Office records cases of violations of rights of Donbass citizens by Kiev authorities: right to life, to security of the person, to the inviolability of the home.
Overnight into 19 February a DPR serviceman born in 1995 sustained a gunshot wound of the medial surface of the right knee joint as a result of hostilities near Donetsk airport.
On 19 February a DPR serviceman of 44 years old sustained a blunt gunshot wound of the abdominal due to the shelling of Bezymennoye village by Ukrainian forces.
A DPR serviceman born in 1985 sustained a blunt mine-shot wound of the right forearm with damage to the lung as a result of hostilities near Yasinovataya.
On 20 February two DPR servicemen born in 1990 and 1996 were blown up by stretching in Novoazovsk region. Both men sustained mine-blast traumas, multiple shrapnel wounds.
On 21 February a DPR serviceman born in 1982 sustained a mine-shot wound, open craniocerebral injury as a result of hostilities near Yasinovataya.
As a result of shelling by the SSU against Yasinovataya, a civilian woman born in 1941 sustained injury of moderate severity.
On 23 February a DPR serviceman born in 1982 sustained an open gunshot fracture of the tibia.
As a result of shelling against Luganskoye village by the Ukrainian forces, a DPR serviceman born in 1960 sustained a mine-blast trauma, shrapnel wounds of the head, right forearm, and the upper third of the left shin.
On 24 February a DPR serviceman of 20 years old sustained multiple shrapnel wounds of both shins in the course of the military operation in Bezymennoye, Novoazovsk region. In Kulikovo village, a DPR serviceman born in 1990 sustained a wound of the right shin due to the mine-blast trauma. As a result of the injury his left foot was amputated.
On 25 February a DPR serviceman born in 1993 sustained a gunshot blunt wound of the soft tissue with foreign body as a result of hostilities near Donetsk.
As a result of shelling against Krasniy Partizan village of Yasinovataya region, a civilian woman born in 1976 sustained shrapnel wounds of the head and right thigh.
On 26 February a DPR serviceman born in 1971 sustained a mine-blast trauma, open fracture of the right shin as a result of shelling in Petrovskiy region of Donetsk.
On 28 February a DPR serviceman of 32 years old was blown by the trip wire in Zaitsevo village near Gorlovka. As a result of the mine-blast trauma a man sustained shrapnel wounds of the chest, closed fracture of the right shin and a partial amputation of the right hand.
On 1 March a civilian man born in 1954 came out of his house during the shelling in Dokuchaevsk and was thrown off by a blast wave against a hard surface. He sustained a closed fracture of the upper third of the shoulder.
On 2 March a civilian man born in 1954 sustained shrapnel wound during the provocative fire from Ukrainian forces. A shell splinter fell near him and blasted – his right knee joint was wounded.
Within the period of 18 February – 2 March 2017, 17 persons sustained injuries of various severities in the territory of the DPR as a result of constant Ukrainian shelling. Among them there were 2 civilian men, 2 civilian women and 13 DPR servicemen.
Within the period of 1 January – 3 March 2017, 116 persons sustained injuries of various severities in the territory of the DPR. Among them, there were 63 DPR servicemen and 53 civilians, including 4 children under eighteen.
Between 18 February and 2 March 2017, 8 servicemen of the Republic died.
Within the period of 1 January and 2 February 2017, 60 persons died in the territory of the DPR. Among them, there were 55 DPR servicemen and 5 civilians
To be specific, since the beginning of the armed conflict 4349 persons had died. Among them, there were 595 women and 3754 men, including 74 children under eighteen.
Officially confirmed information on individuals, who have been wounded since the beginning of the conflict continues to be reported to the Ombudsman Office in DPR. The information is being processed at the moment and it will be included into general statistics of the injured individuals.
- Register of the prisoners of war and missing soldiers and civilians
On 1 March the regular meeting in Minsk format took place. The idea of involvement of an international organization that would record detainees’ consent or refusal to cross the delimitation line was at the top of the agenda.
According to the Ukrainian side, there are persons claimed by the DPR officials who do not wish to cross the delimitation line.
«Being aware of the use of illegal methods, moral and psychological pressure by SSU, we have doubts about their genuine desire to stay in the territory of Ukraine. So, it was decided to involve UN representatives to get assurance of the voluntary character of these statements. The international organization has given its consent to exercise control. The more efficient this work will be, the earlier we will be able to perform the exchange» – commented the Ombudsman.
«As soon as documentation of the cases of refusals to cross the delimitation line will be complete, we will be very close to the long-awaited release of our fellows.
I hope, the Ukrainian side will not create new obstacles and we will finally exchange the prisoners of war» – Daria Morozova concluded.
During the week, the DPR Ombudsman’s Office received no appeals on capture of citizens.
During the week, no appeals on the missing have been received.
Based on the updated figures as of 03.03.2017, 790 persons are kept by the Ukrainian side including:
– 476 persons whose whereabouts had been confirmed in the territory of Ukraine. Two persons had been excluded from the list, as their whereabouts had been confirmed in the territory of Ukraine, and there is no need to exchange them.
– 261 persons whose whereabouts are unknown or are being clarified by the Ukrainian side. Based on the data, provided by the Ukrainian side on 28 February, the status of two persons, who are under judicial investigation, has been confirmed. Those persons were transferred from the list of unconfirmed persons to the list of confirmed ones.
– 53 persons for whom a request was previously submitted to the Ukrainian side, but no reply was received
As of 3 March 2017 465 persons are considered missing.
The Ombudsman’s Office continues to clarify information about the individuals, who were detained by the Ukrainian side, the statistics may change.
The DPR Ombudsman’s Office will no longer publicly categorize the detainees by “serviceman”, “arrested for political reasons”, “civilian irrelevant to the conflict” due to safety considerations.
- Register of forcibly displaced persons.
The year 2014 turned to an endless nightmare for Donbass residents. People, who were used to live in peace suddenly faced a demanding challenge. Life as they knew it was over: some businesses closed, there was a shortage of goods, streets became deserted. The front-line areas became rather dangerous, even inside the buildings. People were not prepared to face these difficulties. Many had to spend days and nights in the underground shelters, some – left their dwelling and went for temporary accommodation.
There were children and the elderly, physically challenged people. They need special conditions and extra care. The DPR Ombudsman’s Office provides assistance for these people.
Everyone, who lives in Donbass, can appeal to the Ombudsman to receive the referral for temporary accommodation. 15 temporary accommodation units were established in the DPR by the efforts of the Office. 12 of them function today. Among them: 6 are in Donetsk, 3 are in Makeyevka, 2 are in Khartsysk, 1 is in Zugres.
A group of volunteer psychologists works under the auspices of the Ombudsman’s Office. They conduct activities aimed at emotional relief and social adaptation of children affected by the armed conflict on a regular basis. Yesterday, 2 March, volunteer psychologists conducted art-therapy in the Donetsk Arts Museum as a part of “Support Heroic Donbass” initiative.
The meeting was attended by children of the forcibly displaced persons, kids from Kovaliov’s family-type children’s house and those who attend the Center of Children and Youth Creativity in Kirovskiy region. These children’s homes had been targeted by the SSU many times. The staffs of the Ombudsman’s Office and Museum fund research associate Inna Klinenko attended the event.
The Ombudsman’s Office is always available to cooperate with other agencies of the Republic that rescue citizens during the shelling. In February, as a result of a joint work of the Ombudsman’s Office and the DPR Ministry for emergency situations 114 persons were evacuated and accommodated in the Temporary Accommodation Center of the Ombudsman.
1377 IDPs now live in temporary accommodation, including 285 underage children. Since the beginning of the conflict, 5041 persons were accommodated in TACs of the Ombudsman`s Office. Among them, 147 persons – in 2017. All the TACs are under the DPR Ombudsman’s inspection. All the TACs are under the DPR Ombudsman’s inspection. The staffs of the Office monitor the TACs on the weekly basis, with the view to respond promptly to the citizens’ needs. The Ombudsman’s Office makes everything possible to improve social and living conditions of people, who live in temporary accommodation. About 250 warm blankets were provided last week.
During the period of work between 19th February and 3rd March 2017, 57 persons have applied to the Ombudsman`s Office on the issues related to internally displaced persons, 17 of them were accommodated in the TACs of the Ombudsman`s Office in Donetsk.
It is necessary to remind that there are 7941, including 2066 children under eighteen registered since the beginning of the conflict. 68 temporary settlements have been established within the territory of DPR, 57 of them function today, 11 of them are held in reserve. Currently, 3039 individuals live in the units, including 626 underage children, 4902 persons live in the housing fund of DPR, including 1440 children under eighteen.
- Employment of DPR citizens
The supreme goal of the Ombudsman is to ensure respect to human rights in all aspects and to restore violated rights.
The right to work is one of the fundamental human rights. It includes the complex of rights in labour legislation: the right to earn a living by work of one’s choice, the right to receive remuneration for work, the right to safe working conditions, the right to receive state guaranteed support for the implementation of labor rights, etc.
The mission of organizing the employment of DPR citizens is shouldered by the Republic Employment Center. Both young and the elderly with solid background often appeal the Center in order to find suitable job. The staffs provide the updated list of vacant positions and give a referral for qualification courses if necessary.
According to their data 4,8 thousands of vacancies were available in the common database as of 3.03.2017. As of 3rd February 2017, there were 16,5 thousand individuals who seek for job, registered in the Republic Employment Centers. Among them: 12,1 thousand have been employed (3,1 of them – on permanent positions, 9 – temporarily).
Donetsk centre of vocational education of the Republic Employment Centre organizes regular free public workshops to train practical skills, such as work with personal computers; technique and mechanization of trade accounts (work with cash register machines); the program “1C: Accounting 8.2.”; fundamentals of entrepreneurship; processing and decoration of textile and clothing products etc. Since the beginning of 2017, 55 persons participated in those workshops.