Crimean Tatar Resource Center

CALL TO ACTION: Demonstrations to mark 5 years of resistance to Crimea’s occupation

31 January 2019

Dear friends of Ukraine, friends of Crimean Tatar people and supporters of international law!

26.02.2019 will mark the 5th anniversary of resistance to the illegal occupation of Crimean peninsula by the Russian Federation. On February 26, 2014,  thousands of Crimean Tatars – indigenous people of Crimea and Ukraine – led a peaceful demonstration in front of the Supreme Council of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea in Simferopol, protesting the military occupation of Crimea by the Russian Federation which was launched on February 20, 2014. Since then, Russia has illegally annexed Crimea in grave breach of the UN Charter, international law and in violation with its own agreements, including the Budapest Memorandum of 1994.

This has led to massive human rights violations. Today, more than 70 political prisoners of Crimea are being held behind bars in Russian prisons and in the FSB facilities. Since 2014, 18 people were  found dead while 17 people went missing on the territory of the temporarily occupied Crimea  and their fate remains unknown. Occupier has banned Mejlis - the representative body of the Crimean Tatar people in grave violation of Crimean Tatars’ collective human rights.

These and other illegal actions by the occupation authorities turned into real tragedies, first of all, for the families of repressed people. More than 100 children in Crimea were left without their fathers and breadwinners. Human rights violations have disproportionately affected Crimean Tatars who continue to peacefully resist the occupation.

The only way to end these human rights violations once and for all is to eliminate their root cause: illegal and deeply immoral occupation of Crimea by the Russian Federation.

Dear friends! #LIBERATECRIMEA movement calls upon you to join hands in solidarity with Ukraine, the Crimean Tatar people and the entire civilized world by marking the 5th anniversary of resistance to Crimea’s occupation through worldwide demonstrations and other direct actions calling for the de-occupation of Crimea, restoration of Ukraine’s territorial integrity and the full realization of collective and individual human rights of Crimean Tatars in their homeland.

They will send strong messages to political leaders in your country, as well as in Ukraine and to the occupying power – Russian Federation - itself.

We call upon you to hold #LIBERATECRIMEA demonstrations between 20-24.02.2019 in central, high-profile locations, recognizable landmarks, in front of Russia’s embassy or consulate in your cities using sample messages and banner designs of #LIBERATECRIMEA movement,Ukrainian, Crimean Tatar flags and flags of the local country.

We ask you to document your action through photos (with city landmarks or Russian embassy/consulate building in the background) and a 1-minute video clip that would include a short address by organizers to express solidarity with Ukraine and the Crimean Tatar people. Your video will be shared through #LIBERATECRIMEA social media channels and in public spaces across Ukraine on 26.02.2019 – the Day of Resistance to Crimea’s Occupation.

If you’d like to organize a #LIBERATECRIMEA demonstration in your city, please let our coordinating team know via direct message through www.facebook.com/liberatecrimea or by e-mailing to liberatecrimea@gmail.com by February 10, 2019.

About #LIBERATECRIMEA

#LIBERATECRIMEA is an international civil society movement for the liberation of Crimea  and solidarity with the Crimean Tatar people. Established in 2018, #LIBERATECRIMEA unites volunteers in Ukraine and worldwide who are committed to using non-violent and creative instruments to strengthen the voice of civil society in calling for the end of Crimea’s illegal occupation - the root cause of countless human rights violations perpetrated in Crimea since February 2014.