This week was marked by the celebration of Defender of the Fatherland Day. Residents of Donbass pay tribute to the feat of heroes defending our land. All soldiers, defenders and veterans are the honour and pride of our Motherland. They will never be forgotten.
In Donetsk, a ceremonial parade was held for a soldier who participated in the Great Patriotic War. On the day of the 96th birthday of Aleksei Filippovich Yunda, students of the Donetsk Higher Combined Arms Command School of the Academy of Civil Protection of the Ministry of Emergency Situations of the DPR, Donetsk Academy of Internal Affairs of the Ministry of Interior of the DPR, and members of the Young Army Cadets National Movement marched to the sounds of a military orchestra in front of his house.
It is extremely important to hold such events and traditions in honour of the heroes, especially in the year when the whole world celebrates the 75th anniversary of the Great Victory. After all, the descendants of the victorious nation worthily continue the cause of their fathers and grandfathers, protecting our rights, freedom and language.
In this context, it is no coincidence that the language problem became one of the key issues at the last 43rd session of the UN Human Rights Council, where the most pressing issues related to the international human rights agenda were discussed. In particular, they considered the discriminatory laws adopted by Ukraine: “On Education”, “On Media” and “On ensuring the functioning of the Ukrainian language as the State language”. The norms contained in these laws infringe on the rights of national minorities and, in fact, introduce censorship in the territory of Ukraine.
The law “On ensuring the functioning of the Ukrainian language as the state language” is worth special attention. The document proclaims Ukrainian the only state language in Ukraine and provides for its mandatory usage in almost all spheres of life, including education. This law directly violates the Constitution of Ukraine, and also contradicts the decision of the Venice Commission, which seriously criticized it. In addition, the Minsk agreements approved by the UN Security Council also require respect for the rights of national minorities.
Earlier, the DPR Ombudsman Daria Morozova already highlighted the fact that the law adopted in Ukraine only exacerbates a split in Ukrainian society, which is embraced by internal contradictions, and can become a serious obstacle to reconciliation. Only full observance and respect for the constitutional rights of Donbass residents can bring the sixth year-long armed conflict to an end.
In her activities, the Human Rights Ombudsman in the Donetsk People’s Republic strongly promotes human rights and freedoms, ensures their protection and monitors their observance.
Upon a human rights violation, the need to restore one’s rights, to obtain legal advice or appeal against actions (omission) of state bodies or authorities, citizens can apply to the Ombudsman in a way that is convenient for them.
Since the beginning of 2020, the Ombudsman received 868 complaints.
All complaints received can be divided into nine categories: personal rights – 163 complaints, economic rights – 34 complaints, social rights – 117 complaints; guarantees of human rights in civil, administrative and criminal proceedings – 116 complaints; enforcement of human rights in penitentiary institutions – 30 complaints; enforcement of rights in the field of education – 0 complaints; enforcement of rights in the field of healthcare – 13 complaints; enforcement of rights of mothers, children and families – 12 complaints, issues connected with the political and military situation in DPR – 383 complaints (diagram).
The number of appeals (complaints, applications) from citizens, submitted to the Office of DPR Ombudsman as of 28.02.2020
Human rights guarantees in civil, administrative and criminal proceedings
Enforcement of rights in the field of healthcare
Enforcement of human rights in penitentiary institutions
Enforcement of rights of mothers, children and families
Enforcement of rights in the field of education
Issues connected with the political and military situation in DPR
- Death toll, injuries to civilians and soldiers as a result of hostilities in the territory of the Donetsk People`s Republic.
The DPR Ombudsman’s Office documents cases of violations of Donbass citizens’ rights by the Ukrainian side, including the right to life, personal integrity and freedom of movement.
On 24 February, as a result of hostilities in Novoazovsk region, DPR servicemen, born in 1995 and 1997, sustained hostilities of varying severities.
On 27 February, in Proletarsky district of Donetsk, a civilian man, born in 1963, sustained multiple shrapnel wounds to right upper limb and left shin as a result of careless handling of a hand grenade.
Within the period between 21 and 27 February 2020, 3 people, including 2 DPR servicemen and 1 civilian man, sustained injuries of varying severities in the Donetsk People’s Republic as a result of armed aggression by Ukraine.
Within the period between 1 January and 27 February 2020, 13 people, including 11 DPR servicemen and 2 civilian man, sustained injuries and traumas of varying severities as a result of armed aggression by Ukraine.
Within the period between 21 and 27 February 2020, 1 DPR serviceman died in the Donetsk People’s Republic.
Within the period between 1 January and 27 February 2020, 8 DPR servicemen died as a result of armed aggression by Ukraine.
To be specific, since the beginning of the armed conflict 4,903 people died, including 81 children.
Officially confirmed information on individuals, who have been wounded since the beginning of the conflict continues to be reported to the Ombudsman’s Office in DPR.
- Register of the prisoners of war, missing soldiers
In the reporting period, the Ombudsman’s Office in the Donetsk People’s Republic received one appeal on arrest.
A man, born in 1987, was detained in February 2020 on a charge of committing crimes under Article 258 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine.
Based on the updated figures as of 28 February 2020, there are 146 people whose whereabouts are unknown or are pending clarification.
This week the Ombudsman’s Office in the Donetsk People’s Republic hasn’t received any appeals on missing persons.
As of 28 February 2020, 465 people are considered missing. They could have been taken prisoner in Ukraine.
- Register of displaced persons and affected citizens.
At the time of armed conflict, the civilian population living in the zone of fighting and near the contact line is often affected. With the view to protect the human right to life and security of the person, and to provide assistance to victims as a result of armed aggression by Ukraine, social housing objects (dormitories, preventative clinics, health care centres).
With the coming into force of the Order of the Head of the Donetsk People’s Republic No. 137 of 24.04.2018, Territorial commissions in cities and districts are now responsible for accommodating affected civilians. They work under supervision of the Republican Commission on Resettlement of Affected Persons chaired by the DPR Human Rights Ombudsman.
There are currently 959 accommodation places in the Donetsk People’s Republic available for citizens of this category. Since the beginning of the conflict, 7,110 people, including 1,628 children have been registered as persons affected as a result of the conflict. 64 social housing objects have been opened in the territory of DPR. 53 of them operate, 11 of them are held in reserve. Currently, 2,189 people live in social housing objects of the Donetsk People’s Republic, including 396 underage children, 4,921 people live in the housing fund, including 1,232 children.