On 5 March 2019, Head of the Mission of Ukraine to the EU Mykola Tochytskyi, members of the European Parliament, First Deputy Minister of Information Policy Emine Dzheppar and human rights activists took part at the conference at the European Parliament “Crimea. The stolen peninsula” dedicated to 5 years of Russian aggaression against Ukraine and illegal occupation of the Crimean peninsula.
Main messages of the skeakers of the event:
- Mykola Tochytskyi: only through consolidated, meaningful and permanent pressure of the international community on Moscow we can force Russia to stop constant brutal suppression of human rights in Crimea and persecutions of Crimean Tatars, Ukrainians and all those, who do not accept the illegal annexation. Our second common task must be establishment of permanent international platform for the de-occupation of Crimea and its return under Ukrainian sovereignty. Over last weekend Priest of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine in Crimea, Archbishop Klyment, was arbitrary detained on his way from Crimea to Russia to support Ukrainian political prisoners in Russia. He was afterwards temporarily released, although in addition to permanent pressure by the occupation authorities, now he is facing a threat of illegal persecution. Situation with detention of Archbishop Klyment shows that there are no moral limits for the Russian authorities to persecute those, who do not accept its policies in Crimea.
- Emine Dzheppar: Russia does not want the world to know the truth about its crimes in the occupied Crimea. We should not underestimate Putin’s ambitions in terms of his aggressive policy. Systematic platform for the de-occupation of Crimea must be established in order to restore territorial integrity and sovereignity of Ukraine.
- Opening the event MEP Anna Fotyga underlined dire human rights and security situation in Russia-occupied Crimea.
- Mark Demesmaeker: now Russia-occupied Crimea is a black hole, isolated and occupied. There is no freedom of expression there. There are prosecutions, political prisoners and ongoing militarization.
- Charles Tannock: occupation of Crimea and provocations in Azov are a part of Russian expansionist policy. Political prisoner Oleh Sentsov is an example that Russia will not tolerate any dissent voices.