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10.5.2016 - (2016/2692(RSP))

with request for inclusion in the agenda for a debate on cases of breaches of human rights, democracy and the rule of law
pursuant to Rule 135 of the Rules of Procedure

Cristian Dan Preda, Andrej Plenković, Davor Ivo Stier, Eva Paunova, Milan Zver, Ildikó Gáll-Pelcz, Kinga Gál, David McAllister, Brian Hayes, Bogdan Brunon Wenta, Anna Maria Corazza Bildt, Adam Szejnfeld, Marijana Petir, Giovanni La Via, Tunne Kelam, Patricija Šulin, Ivan Štefanec, Dubravka Šuica, Ivana Maletić, Jaromír Štětina, Therese Comodini Cachia, Sven Schulze, Luděk Niedermayer, Eduard Kukan, Pavel Svoboda, Romana Tomc, Lefteris Christoforou, Csaba Sógor, Roberta Metsola, Tomáš Zdechovský, Michaela Šojdrová, Claude Rolin, Andrey Kovatchev, Ramón Luis Valcárcel Siso on behalf of the PPE Group

See also joint motion for a resolution RC-B8-0582/2016

Postup : 2016/2692(RSP)
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European Parliament resolution on Crimean Tatars


The European Parliament,

-having regard to its previous resolutions on the Eastern Partnership (EaP), Ukraine, and the Russian Federation,

-having regard to the Reports of the Human Rights Assessment Mission on Crimea conducted by the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR) and the OSCE High Commissioner on National Minorities (HCNM),

- having regard to the European Council decisions (of 21 March, 27 June and 16 July 2014) imposing sanctions on the Russian Federation as a follow-up to the illegal annexation of Crimea,

-having regard to UN General Assembly Resolution 68/262 of 27 March 2014 entitled ‘Territorial integrity of Ukraine’,

-having regard to the Freedom House report ‘Freedom in the World 2016’, which assesses the state of political and civic freedoms in illegally annexed Crimea as ‘not free’,

-having regard to the ruling of the de facto Crimean Supreme Court on 26th April which found the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar people as an extremist organisation and banned its activity in the Crimean peninsula,

-having regard to the statements of the Spokesperson of the VP/HR of 14th April 2016 on suspension of Mejlis activities of the Crimean Tatars and of 26th April 2016 on the decision of the "Supreme Court" of Crimea to ban Mejlis activities,

-having regard to the statement of the Commissioner for Human Rights of the Council of Europe of 26th April 2016 urging a reversal of the ban on the Mejlis, and the statement of the Secretary General of the Council of Europe of 26th April 2016 on the ban of Mejlis that risks targeting Crimean Tatar community as a whole,

-having regard to Rules 135(5) and 123(4) of its Rules of Procedure,


A. whereas the Russian Federation has illegally annexed Crimea and Sevastopol and therefore is an occupying state, which has violated international law, including the UN Charter, the Helsinki Final Act, the 1994 Budapest Memorandum and the 1997 Treaty of Friendship, Cooperation and Partnership between the Russian Federation and Ukraine;

B. whereas targeted abuses have been registered against the Tatar community, the majority of which opposed the Russian takeover and boycotted the so-called referendum on 16 March 2014, particularly through the enforcement of Russia’s vague and overly broad ‘anti-extremist’ legislation to intimidate or silence critics; whereas these abuses include abduction, forced disappearance, violence, torture and extrajudicial killings that the de facto authorities have failed to investigate and prosecute;

C. whereas Crimean Tatar leaders, such as Mustafa Dzhemiliev, a member of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine, and Refat Chubarov, the Chairman of the Mejlis, and other Members of Mejlis and Crimean Tatar activists were banned from entering Crimea; whereas they are currently allowed to enter, but under threat of arrest; whereas a Russian court has now issued an arrest warrant for the Chairman of this self-governing body, Refat Chubarov, and Mustafa Dzhemiliev, who earlier spent 15 years in Soviet prisons for his efforts to allow his nation to return to their native land in Crimea;

D. whereas the Russian Federation has been restricting access to Crimea for the OSCE, the UN, and the Council of Europe, not to mention human rights NGOs and independent journalists; whereas the lack of access makes human rights monitoring and reporting in Crimea very difficult;

E. whereas the entire population of Crimean Tatars, an indigenous people of Crimea, was forcibly deported to other parts of the then USSR in 1944 with no right to return until 1989; whereas on 12 November 2015 the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine adopted a resolution in which it recognised the deportation of the Crimean Tatars in 1944 as genocide and established 18 May as a Day of Remembrance;

F. whereas the activities of the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar people have been suspended and it has consequently been banned; it is now recognised as an extremist organisation; the decision of the so-called Crimean Prosecutor General and the so-called Supreme Court are intrinsic parts of the policy of repression and intimidation of the Russian Federation which is punishing this minority for their loyalty towards the Ukrainian state during the illegal annexation of the peninsula two years ago;


1. Strongly condemns the decision of the de facto Supreme Court of Crimean to ban the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar people and demands its immediate reversal; considers this decision as systemic and targeted persecution of the Crimean Tatars;

2. Reminds that the ban on the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar people, which is the legitimate and recognised representation body of the indigenous people of Crimea, will provide fertile ground to stigmatise and further discriminate them as well as violates their human rights and basic civil liberties, and is an attempt to expel them from Crimea which is their historical motherland;

3. Recalls that the banning of the Mejlis means that it will be prohibited from convening, publishing its views in the mass media, holding public events or using bank accounts;

4. Reminds the sad second anniversary of the illegal annexation of the Crimean peninsula by the Russian Federation on the 20th of February 2014; recalls its severe condemnation of that act of breach of international law; expresses its strong commitment to the policy of non-recognition of the illegal annexation of Crimea and calls on all EU Member States to strictly adhere to it; condemns the visits to Crimea of some politicians from the EU Member States, some Members of the national parliaments of the Member States as well as of the European Parliament; highlights also that the restoration of Ukrainian control over the peninsula is one of the prerequisites for re-establishing cooperative relations with the Russian Federation, including the suspension of related sanctions; reiterates its strong commitment to the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine within its internationally recognised borders;

5. Condemns the severe restrictions on the freedoms of expression, association and peaceful assembly, including at traditional commemorative events such as the anniversary of the deportation of the Crimean Tatars by Stalin’s totalitarian Soviet Union regime and cultural gatherings of the Crimean Tatars; condemns restrictions against free media in Crimea, in particular the withdrawal of the licence of the biggest Crimean Tatar TV Channel “ATR”;

6. Urges the Russian Federation, which bears responsibility for the human rights violations as the occupying state in Crimea, and the de facto local authorities to investigate effectively, impartially and transparently all cases of disappearances, torture and human rights abuses by the police and paramilitary forces active in the Crimean peninsula since February 2014, and ensure permanent and unimpeded access of the relevant international human rights bodies to Crimea with an aim to monitor the human rights situation;

7. Welcomes the Ukrainian initiative to establish an international negotiation mechanism on the reestablishment of Ukrainian sovereignty over Crimea in the ‘Geneva plus’ format, which should include direct engagement by the EU; calls on the Russian Federation to start negotiations with Ukraine and other parties on the de-occupation of Crimea, to lift trade and energy embargos and to revoke the state of emergency in Crimea;

8. Calls for the preservation of the multicultural environment of Crimea and for full respect for Ukrainian, Tatar and other minority languages and distinctive cultures; condemns legal pressure on Crimean Tatar’s cultural and educational organisations, including those dealing with Crimean Tatar children;

9. Calls on the Russian Federation to investigate all cases of torture of prisoners illegally apprehended in Crimea, to release prisoners such as Oleg Sentsov and Oleksandr Kolchenko, as well as Ahtem Chiigoz, the deputy chairman of the Mejlis, Mustafa Degermendzhi and Ali Asanov who were arrested in Crimea by so-called local authorities for their peaceful protest against the occupation, and to guarantee their safe return to Ukraine; urges the Russian Federation to end the politically motivated prosecution of dissidents and civic activists; condemns their subsequent transfer to Russia and the forcible attribution of Russian citizenship;

10. Instructs its President to forward this resolution to the VP/HR, the Council, the Commission, the governments and parliaments of the Member States, the President, Government and Parliament of Ukraine, the Council of Europe, the OSCE, the President, Government and Parliament of the Russian Federation, and the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar People.