At the annual parliament meeting, the Human Rights Ombudsman in the Donetsk People’s Republic Daria Morozova told about the results of work in 2018.
The Ombudsman promotes the observance of human and civil rights and freedoms as well as the restoration of violated rights and freedoms by taking appropriate response measures not only at the domestic but also at the international level. According to the law No. 30-INS of April 3, 2015, “On the Ombudsman in the Donetsk People’s Republic”, given the martial law in the territory of the Donetsk People’s Republic, the Ombudsman identifies human rights violations that occur during the war, provides legal assistance to people affected by the armed conflict.
During the reporting period, one of the leading activities of Daria Morozova was reviewing written and oral appeals of citizens on issues of violation of rights and taking appropriate response measures in order to restore them. In 2018, the Ombudsman received 6523 appeals.
The Ombudsman said that last year 12 on-site receptions of citizens were held in order to guarantee the state protection of the rights and freedoms of citizens. Also, 11 inspections of children’s social institutions were conducted in order to monitor the living and educational environment of children.
Daria Morozova also raised the issue of protecting the rights of persons staying in penitentiary institutions of the Republic. During the reporting period, the Ombudsman organized two visits of representatives of the United Nations Human Rights Monitoring Mission and the OSCE to penitentiary institutions of the Donetsk People’s Republic. Daria Morozova has sent 33 official appeals to international human rights organizations with a request to give assessment to health condition, and the conditions of detention of supporters of the Republic who are in custody of penitentiary institutions of Ukraine, to provide them with necessary medical care.
Another key activity of Daria Morozova is working with persons affected by the armed conflict, aimed at ensuring their adaptation to normal life. The Ombudsman added that these citizens are also regularly provided with humanitarian aid in the form of food and personal hygiene products. In collaboration with the International Committee of the Red Cross, in 2018, families of affected citizens were provided with 9,949 humanitarian packages.
Daria Morozova also noted that in 2018 she has prepared and submitted the draft law “On displaced persons” to the Head of the Donetsk People’s Republic in order to legislate the status of affected citizens. Subsequently, it will be reviewed by the People’s Council of the Donetsk People’s Republic.
Daria Morozova drew attention to the fact that at the meetings of the Humanitarian Subgroup of the Contact Group in Minsk, agreements have been reached on transferring persons convicted before the conflict, who expressed a desire to serve their sentences in Ukraine. In 2018, 33 persons were transferred. Since the beginning of the conflict, the Republic has handed over 199 persons.
The Ombudsman told that in order to document war crimes committed by the Ukrainian side, the administrations of cities and regions of the Republic provided daily information about civilians and military personnel affected by the military aggression of Ukraine. According to Daria Morozova, since the beginning of 2018, 162 people, including 5 children, have died in the Republic. In addition, she mentioned that 310 people have been injured as a result of the military aggression of Ukraine last year, including 2 children.
At the end of her speech, Daria Morozova noted that she is working on establishing relations with ombudsmen of the neighbouring countries for mutual exchange of experience and coordination of efforts to address violations of human rights and freedoms. Contacts have already been established with ombudsmen of the CIS countries and some European countries.