Crimean Tatar Resource Center

Call to action! International demonstrations to mark 5th anniversary of resistance to the occupation of Crimea!

11 February 2019

Dear friends of Ukraine, friends of the 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, about 10,000 representatives of the indigenous Crimean Tatar people, thousands of Ukrainians and other residents of Crimea on the call of the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar people came to the Verkhovna Rada of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and did not allow pro-Russian deputies to take anti-constitutional decisions on separation of Crimea from Ukraine.

February 26, 2014 - the civil society of Crimea defended Ukraine’s territorial integrity in a peaceful, legal way, preventing Russia and its agents in the Crimea from holding an extraordinary session in order to imitate the alleged “voluntary transition” of Crimea to Russia.

Therefore, February 26 is the Day of the Crimean Resistance!

Despite the peaceful civil position, Russia illegally annexed Crimea using military force 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 indigenous people of Crimea. 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. This will be a strong convincing message to political leaders in your countries, as well as 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, , 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 flag of the local country where the action is conducted.

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, in Ukrainian mass media and in public spaces across Ukraine on 26.02.2019 – on 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 12, 2019.

About #LIBERATECRIMEA

#LIBERATECRIMEA is an international civil society movement for the de-occupation of Crimea and solidarity with the Crimean Tatar people. Established in 2018, #LIBERATECRIMEA is aimed at strengthening the voice of civil society calling for the end of Crimea’s illegal occupation, gross violation of international law and the root cause of countless human rights violations committed in Crimea since February 2014.