International Day for the Right to the Truth concerning Gross Human Rights Violations and for the Dignity of Victims


The International Day for the Right to the Truth concerning Gross Human Rights Violations and for the Dignity of Victims was established by a decision of the United Nations General Assembly in 2010 in memory of Monsignor Oscar Arnulfo Romero, Archbishop of San Salvador, who was killed during a religious service on March 24, 1980, by a far-right activist. Monsignor Romero consistently and strongly condemned violation of the rights of the least protected categories of citizens, stood up against poverty, social inequality and torture.

These problems are still acute in today’s world. They became even more alarming in Ukraine after the coup d’état of February 2014. Many residents of Donbass, where military conflict has been going on for five years, as well as those who express disagreement with the official Kiev’s policy, have been victims of gross violations of human rights, encroachment on life and personal inviolability, honour and dignity.

Representatives of international organizations regularly document these facts in their reports. Thus, the report of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) on the human rights situation in Ukraine for the period from August 16 to November 15, 2018 documented acts of arbitrary detention, enforced disappearance and abduction, torture and ill-treatment, which are often used by the Security Service of Ukraine that has become the main repressive body of the Kiev regime.

In addition, in Ukraine there have been numerous cases of violation of the right to a fair trial. As specified in the Report, only in the reporting period, the Ukrainian courts passed 89 sentences in criminal cases related to armed conflict, 52 of which are based on self-incriminating agreements. However, in some cases, the prosecution has not provided any additional evidence. OHCHR expressed concern that the confessions might have been forced. Among the most famous cases that caused public uproar were those of Yulia Prosolova, Daria Mastikasheva and many others.

The Human Rights Ombudsman in the Donetsk People’s Republic pays special attention to the issue of gross violations of rights and freedoms in Ukraine against residents of Donbass and victims of persecution in connection with the armed conflict. Within the established cooperation, the Ombudsman always informs about violations to facilitate documenting such cases and due legal assessment by international human rights organizations and the world community.