Speech of Refat Chubarov at the 20th session of the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues

April 28, 2021

Speech by the Chairman of the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar People Refat Chubarov at the virtual meeting of the 20th session of the UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues. Item 6 of the Agenda of the Session: Follow-up to the outcome document of the World Conference on Indigenous Peoples.


Dear Madam Chair!

Dear Forum members!

I am the Chairman of the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar people – the representative body of the indigenous people of Crimea, whose historical territory, which is an integral part of the Ukrainian state, has been occupied by the Russian Federation since February 2014.

The Russian occupation of Crimea caused catastrophic consequences for the unique territory of the Crimean Peninsula and threats to the future of its indigenous peoples – the Crimean Tatars, Karaites and Krymchaks.

The Russian Federation pursues the goal of completely ousting the indigenous Crimean Tatar people from the occupied Crimea.

The Russian ban of the activities of the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar people is an attempt to intimidate and disorient the Crimean Tatars in the face of constant repressions and persecutions committed by the Russian occupants against the indigenous people of Crimea.

Moscow is not fulfilling the Order of the International Court of Justice of April 19, 2017, obliging the Russian Federation to immediately cancel the decision to ban the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar people.

Dear Forum members!

The major achievements we have made over the past two decades, including the formation of the Permanent Forum and the establishment of the mandate of the Special Rapporteur, cannot and should not be in jeopardy.

We call on the UN to find effective mechanisms to curb any aggressor state. Moreover, if such an aggressor is a permanent member of the Security Council, which in our case is the Russian Federation.

I call on the Special Rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples to pay special attention to the situation of indigenous peoples whose territories have been occupied as a result of inter-state conflicts.

Thank you very much for  your attention!