Russia rejects UN mission report of FSB’s alleged mistreatment of Ukrainians
In a statement, published on its website, the ministry said it was “perplexed” by the Monitoring Mission’s opinion about the results of the September 7 swap of detainees
The Russian Foreign Ministry headquarters in Moscow© Mikhail Japaridze/TASS
MOSCOW, December 16. /TASS/. Moscow rejects the report by the UN Human Rights Monitoring Mission in Ukraine, which accuses Russian security service FSB of alleged cruel treatment of Ukrainian citizens, the Russian Foreign Ministry said on Monday.
In a statement, published on its website, the ministry said it was “perplexed” by the Monitoring Mission’s opinion about the results of the September 7 swap of detainees.
“We reject groundless accusations about alleged cruel treatment of Ukrainian citizens by the Federal Security Service of the Russian Federation. We call upon experts to use official sources of information while preparing their reports,” the statement reads.
The Russian Foreign Ministry also reiterated that the UN mission’s mandate was not applicable to the territory of other states, and, therefore, its decision to once again include the situation in Crimea and Sevastopol in the report was illegitimate.
Russian diplomats said that that although the number of victims of the eastern Ukrainian conflict has subsided, the situation in the country remains tense.
“In the past five years, dozens of thousands of families have lost their homes. Only a limited number of them received compensations or were provided with temporary housing. Ukrainian servicemen continue to brazenly occupy (and, in some cases, to destroy) homes of civilians or use public utilities at their expense,” the ministry said.
Russian diplomats said they shared the observer mission’s concerns about ongoing systematic human rights violations by the Ukrainian authorities.
“Among other things, the report mentions instances of extrajudicial executions, arbitrary arrests, solitary confinement, torture and cruel treatment of civilians on territories outside the Kiev government’s control,” the Russian Foreign Ministry said. “The right for a fair trial is not being observed when cases related to the armed conflict are being heard. The freedoms of speech and peaceful assembly are being violated, while journalists and rights activists get attacked.”
The ministry also supported the mission’s findings about the judicial inquiry into the atrocities committed by Ukrainian radicals in Odessa on May 2, 2014, when almost 50 people were killed, many of them burned alive in the Odessa House of Trade Unions.
“The presence of right-wing radicals in the court during sessions undermines impartiality of the process, as judges are subjected to psychological pressure,” the statement says. “We are also not surprised by the lack of progress in the investigation into the killing of protesters and police officers during the Maidan events. All those facts reveal Kiev’s inability to demonstrate political will and carry out a thorough and unbiased investigation into human rights violations committed by the Ukrainian armed forces and the Security Service of Ukraine.”
The Russian Foreign Ministry said it regretted the Ukrainian government’s reluctance to protect minority languages and expressed hope that Kiev would review its policy toward national minorities living on the territory of Ukraine.