Kiev’s destructive policy and the West’s unilateral sanctions violate the rights of people living in Russia’s Crimea, Natalia Zolotova, an adviser to Russia’s permanent representative to the United Nations Geneva office and other Geneva-based international organizations, said on Monday.
She stressed that the republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol are part of Russia. “Real violations of the right of people living in Crimea are caused by the destructive, if not subversive policy of the Kiev authorities which now and then organize water, transport, energy and food blockade of the peninsula or even resort to acts of sabotage and terrorism,” she said at a session dedicated to the United Nations regular report on the human rights situation in Ukraine.
She drew attention to “West’s unilateral restrictive measures against Crimeans” and attempts to isolate the peninsula from the outside world under far-fetched pretexts. Such actions, in her words, “are nothing but a flagrant violation of all categories of rights of people living in Crimea and deserve a resolute condemnation and immediate cancellation.”
“For more than 20 years, Ukraine did nothing to improve the situation of Crimean Tatars” and only now “Kiev has become an allegedly ardent advocate of their rights on the international arena using Crimean Tatars in its dirty political purposes,” Zolotova said.
Russia, on the contrary, has already done much to improve the situation in Crimea having rehabilitated repressed peoples, having granted an official state status to the Crimean Tatar language, and having legally ensured representation of minorities in power structures. “The level of social protection has been increased, serious efforts are being taken to develop education and culture, to promote inter-religious dialogue and accord,” she stressed.
The Republic of Crimea and Sevastopol, a city with a special status on the Crimean Peninsula, where most residents are Russians, refused to recognize the legitimacy of authorities brought to power amid riots during a coup in Ukraine in February 2014.
Crimea and Sevastopol adopted declarations of independence on March 11, 2014. They held a referendum on March 16, 2014, in which 96.77% of Crimeans and 95.6% of Sevastopol voters chose to secede from Ukraine and join the Russian Federation. Russian President Vladimir Putin signed the reunification deals March 18, 2014.
Despite the absolutely convincing results of the referendum, Ukraine has been refusing to recognize Crimea as a part of Russia.