The United Nations is the organization of countries united for the preservation of peace, security and development of cooperation. One of the purposes of the United Nations, as stated in its Charter, is “to implement international cooperation in solving international problems of an economic, social, cultural and humanitarian character”. The United Nations first began to undertake this task after the Second World War. Currently, the international community relies on the United Nations to coordinate emergency and long-term relief operations, including food, shelter, medical supplies and logistical support. It is also a catalyst for governments and other aid agencies to start acting.
The ongoing conflict in eastern Ukraine is one of the deadliest in Europe since the Second World War, according to Humanitarian Bulletin by OCHA published this Wednesday. Casualties continue to rise as a result of the conflict between Kiev and the Republics, says the Bulletin.
UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs expressed its concern over security and well-being of children, and was alarmed by the situation of 1.2 million food insecure people.
“In 2017, mine-related incidents remained among the most frequent causes of civilian casualties. Reports of Improvised Explosive Devices (IED), or ERW near educational facilities, and other areas, where children often find themselves playing are of a major concern. Mine-contamination is particularly bad at checkpoints, where thousands of people gather each day, which poses a threat. OHCHR verifies some 158 mine-related casualties in 2017, raising concern for the safety and protection of millions.
Despite numerous calls to adhere to the International Humanitarian Law (IHL) and the Minsk Full Package of Measures to protect civilian and infrastructure, shelling continues to land in or near the critical water supply systems and pipelines, threatening millions of people. In December alone, the Donetsk Filter Station (DFS) was shelled several times, forcing DFS personnel, who often risk their lives so water continues running for some 345,000 people, to take cover in bomb shelters. The operations of the DFS continued without interruptions on every occasion, because of the bravery of the staff,” says the Humanitarian Bulletin promulgated on January 31, 2018.
42 educational facilities were damaged in both territories near the contact line as a result of the conflict, as specified in the document. “There was no single month, without school being damaged or access to education impacted. An alarming trend is the reported cases of incidents, when such attacks happened during the daytime, with children and teachers attending school. In addition to physical damage, there were at least 22 educational facilities forced to be temporarily closed for days or weeks in 2017 due to insecurity nearby. Thus, a total of 64 educational facilities were directly affected by the conflict in 2017, either by conflict-related damage or temporary closure, affecting access to education for at least 6,500 children. During the latest escalation of violence on 18 December alone, seven schools were reported to have been damaged, says the Bulletin.
The post of the Human Rights Ombudsman has been established in the Donetsk People’s Republic to ensure the state protection of citizens’ rights and freedoms, to prevent any form of discrimination regarding the exercise of their rights and freedoms.
Citizens can apply to the Ombudsman in any suitable way. Now, the majority of applications are still verbal and submitted through personal reception either with the Ombudsman or the heads of the Office, addressing the Public Complaints and Appeals Department, via hotlines and via web-reception on the Website of the Ombudsman. There is a possibility to file a written complaint that may be submitted either in person or via e-mail. Since 2018 the Ombudsman received 580 appeals. In the period of work between January 27 and February 2, 2018, 7 persons visited the Ombudsman in person, 36 citizens received counselling by the Working Group on Issues of Temporary Displaced Persons, 31 citizens received counselling by the Appeals department, and 23 calls were received via hotlines. 24 applications were received via e-mail, 11 written appeals were taken into consideration, 5 – have been reviewed among those received earlier, 9 persons received legal counselling.
All appeals received can be divided into four categories: violations in criminal law – 40 appeals, violations in civil law– 24 appeals, administrative and legal violations against the DPR citizens – 0 appeals, social and humanitarian issues – 278 appeals (diagram 1).
The number of appeals (complaints, applications) from citizens, submitted to the Office of DPR Ombudsman as of 2.02.2018
Violations in criminal law
Violations in civil law
Administrative and legal violations against citizens
Issues of social and humanitarian affairs
Among all incoming correspondence to the Ombudsman of DPR, the one which deals with the issues of exercise of social rights of citizens and violations of these rights is the most frequent. These issues are: pension and social payments, benefits, disability, humanitarian aid – 63 appeals, temporary accommodation – 140 appeals, issues of housing legislation, protection of consumers of housing and public utility services – 14 appeals, migration legislation issues – 17 appeals, labour legislation issues – 18 appeals, healthcare issues – 11 appeals, guardianship and family law issues – 4 appeals, issues of education, culture and sport – 4 appeals, activities of public associations, organizations and trade unions, religious organizations – 2 appeals, land use and tenure – 0 appeals, the rights of servicemen and law enforcement officials – 5 appeal, issues related to hostilities – 49 appeals, issues of destruction in the sphere of culture, housing and road transport infrastructure – 0 appeals, search of the missing – 13 appeals, exchange of detained persons – 30 appeals, issues related to citizens wounded and deceased as a result of hostilities in the DPR – 6 appeals, other issues – 117 appeals. (Diagram 2).
The number of appeals (complaints, applications) from citizens on social and humanitarian isses, received by the DPR Ombudsman`s Office as of 2.02.2018
pension and social payments, benefits, disability, humanitarian aid
migration legislation issues
guardianship and family law issues
land use and tenure
issues of destruction in the sphere of culture, housing and road transport infrastructure
labour legislation issues
issues of education, culture and sport
the rights of servicemen and law enforcement officials
search of the missing
issues of housing legislation, protection of consumers of housing and public utility services
activities of public associations, organizations and trade unions, religious organizations
issues related to hostilities
exchange of detained persons
issues related to citizens wounded and deceased as a result of hostilities in the DPR
The majority of complains are traditionally received from Donetsk, by territory (Diagram 3).
The number of appeals (complains, applications) from citizens, received by the DPR Ombudsman`s Office as of 2.02.2018
- Estimates of mortality, wounds to civilians and soldiers as a result of hostilities in the territory of the Donetsk People`s Republic.
Almost every day the DPR Ombudsman’s Office records cases of violations of Donbass citizens’ rights by Kiev authorities: right to life, to security of the person, to inviolability of the home.
On January 26 as a result of hostilities a DPR serviceman born in 1965 sustained mine-blast trauma, open comminuted fracture to lower jaw.
Within the period between January 26 and February 1, 2018, 1 DPR serviceman sustained injuries in the territory of the DPR as a result of armed aggression of the Ukrainian side.
Within the period between January 1 and February 1, 2018, 29 persons sustained injuries of various severities in the territory of the DPR. Among them, there were 21 DPR servicemen, 5 civilian men and 3 civilian women.
Within the period between January 26 and February 1, 2018, 1 DPR serviceman died in the territory of the DPR.
Within the period between January 1 and February 1, 2018, 8 persons DPR died in the Donetsk People’s Republic. Among them – 7 DPR servicemen and 1 civilian.
To be specific, since the beginning of the armed conflict 4575 persons died. Among them, there are 605 women and 3970 men, including 76 children under eighteen.
Officially confirmed information on individuals, who have been wounded since the beginning of the conflict continues to be reported to the Ombudsman’s Office in DPR.
- Register of the prisoners of war, missing soldiers
This week the Ombudsman’s Office in the Donetsk People’s Republic received one appeal on arrest of a man born in 1987, who had been arrested in January 2018.
Based on the updated figures as of 02.02.2018, 302 persons are held by the Ukrainian side including:
– 84 of those whose presence on the territory of Ukraine had been confirmed. 4 persons were included into the list, as their whereabouts had been confirmed in Ukraine.
– 218 persons whose whereabouts are unknown or are being clarified by the Ukrainian side. 4 persons, whose whereabouts had been confirmed in Ukraine, were excluded from the list.
This week no appeals on missing persons were received by the Ombudsman’s Office in the Donetsk People’s Republic. The whereabouts of one person had been established.
As of 2 February 2018, 445 persons are considered missing. Hypothetically, they might be in Ukrainian captivity.
- Register of forcibly displaced persons.
Temporary Accommodation Centres (TACs) have been opened in the Donetsk People’s Republic. Any person can receive temporary accommodation there if they need it. 1214 IDPs now live in temporary accommodation of the Office, including 218 underage children. Since the beginning of the conflict 5341 referrals for temporary accommodation have been issued, 98 of them – in 2018. All the TACs are under the DPR Ombudsman’s inspection. The staffs of the Office monitor the TACs on a weekly basis, with the view to respond promptly to the citizens’ needs. The Ombudsman makes every effort to improve social and living conditions for people who live in the TACs.
During the period of work between January 27 and February 2, 2018, 47 persons have applied to the Ombudsman’s Office on the issues related to internally displaced persons.
There are currently 1212 housing spots available for IDPs. Among them: 1212 – in DPR Temporary Accommodation Centres (including TACs of Ombudsman`s Office); 296 – in TACs of the Ombudsman`s Office.
It is necessary to remind that there are 7711 persons, including 1922 children under the age of eighteen registered since the beginning of the conflict. 63 temporary settlements have been established within the territory of DPR, 55 of them operate today, 8 of them are held in reserve.
Currently, 1527 individuals live in the centres, including 288 underage children, 4970 persons live in the housing fund of DPR, including 1416 children under eighteen.
- Employment of DPR citizens
The Republican Employment Centre is the main institution responsible for providing jobs to the population.
According to their data, 9.5 thousands of vacancies were available in the common database as of 2.02.2018. As of February 2, 2018, there were 12.9 thousand individuals who seek for job, registered in the Republic Employment Centres. Among them: 6.8 thousand have been employed (1.3 of them – on permanent positions, 5.5 – temporarily).
Donetsk Centre of Vocational Education of The Republic Employment Centre organises regular free public workshops to train practical skills, such as work with personal computers; technique and mechanization of trade accounts (work with cash register machines); the program “1C: Accounting 8.2.”; fundamentals of entrepreneurship; processing and decoration of textile and clothing products etc. 7 persons participated in such seminars.