Crimean Tatar Resource Center

The results of the European Parliament elections are quite optimistic for Ukraine - #LIBERATECRIMEA

3 June 2019

On Monday, the 3rd of June, in the Ukrainian Crisis Media Center, activists of the international civil society movement for de-occupation of Crimea and solidarity with the Crimean Tatar people #LIBERATECRIMEA presented the results of the “#European Parliament: candidates, tell: who does Crimea belong to?” campaign. According to the them, the election results are quite optimistic for Ukraine and the participants of the campaign “#European Parliament: candidate, tell: who does Crimea belong to?”. Moreover, activists announced a new campaign - "Ukrainian parliamentary candidate, tell: who does Crimea belong to?".

The main participants of the conference were:

- Eskender Bariiev - activist of the international civil society movement for de-occupation of Crimea and solidarity with the Crimean Tatar people #LIBERATECRIMEA, Head of the Board of the Crimean Tatar Resource Center;

- Serhii Parkhomenko - activist of the international civil society movement for de-occupation of Crimea and solidarity with the Crimean Tatar people #LIBERATECRIMEA, Head of the Center for Foreign Policy Studies;

- Oleh Kudrin – Ukrinform Baltic countries department news agency journalist and renowned Latvian activist (via Skype);

- Liudmyla Mlosh - activist of the international civil society movement for de-occupation of Crimea and solidarity with the Crimean Tatar people #LIBERATECRIMEA in Berlin - Germany (via Skype).

The speakers reminded everyone that the campaign’s goal was to determine the position of parties whose candidates are running for the seats in the European Parliament on the issue of de-occupation of Crimea and the protection of human rights on the peninsula.

According to them, the results of the European Parliament elections, clearly demonstrate that pro-European forces: the green and liberal parties, were able to increase their representation.

“It is these parties that are the most consistent allies of Ukraine in our common goal of de-occupation of Crimea. Particularly, Claudia Gamon, one of New Austria political party was elected to the new European Parliament, responded to our call on the eve of the elections and called for the immediate liberation of Crimea, as well as the Belgian liberals, including Ukraine’s well-known lobbyist Guy Verhofstadt and others”, - said Serhii Parkhomenko.

“Undoubtedly Positive is the fact that, for example, in Germany the second place in the elections was taken not by the Social Democrats, who are more loyal to the Russian Federation, but the greens, and namely, Rebecca Harms, one of the most prominent representatives of Germany’s greens consistently supported the liberation of Crimea”, - said Eskender Bariiev.

According to activists, even if Christian Democrats with liberals and greens fail to form a majority themselves, social democrats can join the “broader coalition”, among which pro-European sentiments and readiness to keep sanction policy against the Russian Federation for the occupation of Crimea and part of Donbass unchanged also prevail.

 

They also note that 8 MPs will represent Latvia in the European Parliament, 3 of whom may share pro-Russian views, while 5 others are ready to support the cause of Crimea’s de-occupation and the restoration of Ukraine’s territorial integrity.


Also activists were able to share their stance on the campaign “#European Parliament: candidates, tell: whose  does Crimea belong to?”. Activists of the movement in the EU countries - Oleh Kudrin and Liudmyla Mlosh also had their word.

At the end of the event, activists of the movement announced a new campaign - "Ukrainian parliamentary candidate, tell: who does Crimea belong to?".

The international civil society movement for de-occupation of Crimea and solidarity with the Crimean Tatar people #LIBERATECRIMEA will monitor the undergoing preparations of a plan for the de-occupation of Crimea, as well as other measures taken to ensure the protection of human rights in the occupied Crimea, including the realization of the collective rights of the Crimean Tatar people in Ukraine in the programs of political parties of Ukraine that will take part in the nearest parliamentary elections.

“Parliamentary elections are one of the most important political events not only in Ukraine, but also all over the world. Politicians, experts, journalists, business representatives and ordinary citizens will be directly involved in this process. It is important for us to include the issues of the de-occupation of Crimea, the protection of human rights and the realization of the collective rights of the Crimean Tatar people to a nationwide political narrative” - Eskender Bariiev emphasized.

According to him, throughout this campaign, activists will be able to reveal the true stance of political actors on the occupation of Crimea, human rights violations by Russia and the realization of the collective rights of the Crimean Tatars as the indigenous people of Crimea.

“There are tens of thousands of us all over the world! We are encouraged by our potential voters! We are fighting for the liberation of Crimea! We want every citizen of Ukraine to vote consciously and only support those political parties, which have a clear stance on restoring the territorial integrity of Ukraine!”, -  the Head of the CTRC said.

He announced that activists would send the following 12 questions to political parties that nominated their candidates during the last Presidential elections:

І. De-occupation of Crimea:

1. Name five main steps you will take to resolve the Crimean issue after the election;

2. Will you initiate the adoption of the law on collaboration / forgiveness?

3. Will you initiate the adoption of the law on the abolition of the Crimean free economic zone?

4. Will the Agreement on the joint use of the Sea of Azov with the Russian Federation be extended during your cadence?

ІІ. Protection of human rights in Crimea:

1. Will you initiate the adoption of the law on political prisoners?

2. What additional state support is your party ready to offer to displaced people?

3. Will you initiate ratification of the Rome Statute by Ukraine?

4. What can be done furthermore to counter Russian repressions in Crimea?

III. Realization of collective rights of the Crimean Tatars as the indigenous people of Ukraine:

1. Will you initiate changes to section X of the Constitution of Ukraine?

2. Will you support the restoration of national-territorial autonomy in Crimea?

3. Will you initiate the adoption of the law on indigenous peoples of Ukraine?

4. Will you initiate the restoration of historical toponyms in Crimea?

“Those political forces that will not be able to provide us with some meaningful answers will be considered the agents of the Kremlin”, - Bariiev said.

“Crimea should be represented in the highest legislative body of Ukraine. However, due to the occupation there is no real possibility to elect 10 MPs in the electoral districts. And, what is more, the law on the indigenous peoples of Ukraine has to be adopted, which could guarantee the representation of the indigenous people of Ukraine in the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine. Therefore, in our opinion, an important indicator of the political party’s stance on restoring the territorial integrity of Ukraine is the presence of representatives of the indigenous Crimean Tatar people in the party candidates lists (at least among the first top 20 of the candidates’ list)”, - said Eskender Bariiev.

According to him, the activists of the movement are calling on political forces:

1. To include in their party candidate lists the active representatives of the indigenous Crimean Tatar people;

2. To include a plan for the de-occupation of Crimea to their political programs, as well as a plan of direct measures for the protection of human rights in the occupied Crimea, including the realization of the collective rights of the Crimean Tatar people in Ukraine;

3. To provide a broader public with an answer to 12 questions posed.

“In order to ensure further work on de-occupation of Crimea, the protection of human rights and the realization of the collective rights of the indigenous Crimean Tatar people, it will be necessary to create a #LIBERATECRIMEA deputy group, which will initiate the Crimean issue and bring together other deputies in order to adopt all the important draft laws”, - the Head of the CTRC said.

“We will announce the results of our monitoring on the 26th of June at an International Day of the Crimean Tatar Flag Forum!”, - the activists concluded.

We remind that in the framework of the presidential elections in Ukraine, the activists of the #LIBERATECRIMEA movement conducted a campaign "Ukrainian presidential candidate, tell: who does Crimea belong to?". As a result of monitoring, they formed a “grey list”, which included 14 candidates, whose programs did not mention Crimea. Subsequently, a certain number of them responded to the call of the movement and voiced their stance on Crimea. According to the results of the aforementioned, a “black list” was formed, which included 9 presidential candidates. Activists handed them "black marks". Before the second round of elections, activists presented a detailed analysis of the rhetoric of Petro Poroshenko and Volodymyr Zelens’ky on the Crimean topic.

#LIBERATECRIMEA is an international civil society movement for de-occupation of Crimea and solidarity with the Crimean Tatar people. It seeks to strengthen the voice of civic society, calling out for the immediate cessation of the illegal occupation of Crimea, an outrageous violation of international law and all other countless human rights violations committed in Crimea by Russia since February 2014.

#LIBERATECRIMEA Press Service