News / Europe

UN Official: Separatists Driving E. Ukraine into Dead End

Residents collect water at a pumping station in the eastern Ukranian city of Slaviansk, June 17, 2014. Slaviansk, the pro-Russian separatist stronghold, is faced with ongoing shortages, utility outages and frequent artillery fire.
Residents collect water at a pumping station in the eastern Ukranian city of Slaviansk, June 17, 2014. Slaviansk, the pro-Russian separatist stronghold, is faced with ongoing shortages, utility outages and frequent artillery fire.
Lisa Schlein
Armed separatists in eastern Ukraine have achieved nothing but the creation of a climate of insecurity which is ruining their own region, U.N. Human Rights Chief Navi Pillay said on Wednesday.
 
A 58-page U.N. report from her office, covering the period from May 7 to June 7, finds a significant deterioration of the human rights situation in the eastern regions of Donetsk and Luhansk.

The U.N.'s Gianni Magazzeni says armed groups who control those areas no longer respect any type of law and order.  

“We are talking about a reign of fear if not a reign of terror in those pocket areas where armed groups can abduct, detain, conduct ill-treatment if not torture, sexual assault, intimidation, threats that would result in people so fearful for their life that they would not even want or dare to vote if they had a chance to do so or even to leave the area if they were in a position to do so,” Magazzeni said. 

Armed groups in the regions of Donetsk and Luhansk should “stop taking themselves, and the people living in their regions, down this dead end, which is leading simply to misery, destruction, displacement and economic deprivation,” Pillay said.
 
“All they have achieved is a climate of insecurity and fear which is having a hugely detrimental impact on many thousands of people,” she said. “The time has come to put down the guns and talk. Peace and reconciliation, and long-term solutions are certainly attainable.”

The report says the self-proclaimed authorities acknowledge that, among their fighters, are citizens of the Russian Federation, including from Chechnya and other republics of the North Caucuses.

And the number of internally displaced people has increased. The U.N. refugee agency estimates there are about 34,000 IDPs in Ukraine, most from Crimea and about 15,000 in the Donetsk region.

U.N. monitors document 222 cases of abductions and detentions since April 13 in eastern Ukraine. Magazzeni says four abductees have been killed and 137 released.

“Among those released, we have been able to talk to them directly," he said. "That is where we have learned of the beatings, sleep deprivation, poor or inhumane conditions, instances of ill treatment, torture or more." 

Freedom of expression continues to be threatened, particularly in the eastern regions.  The report says journalists, 39 of whom have been abducted, face ongoing intimidation and threats to their physical security.

U.N. monitors report the situation for Pro-Ukrainian sympathizers in Crimea has worsened markedly since Russia annexed the peninsula in March. 
 
The lack of law and order was undermining basic services such as education and water supplies in some of the impacted areas.
 
“Food soon may be an issue,” Magazzeni said.

Some information for this report provided by Reuters

You May Like

Philippines, Muslim Rebels Try to Salvage Peace Pact

Peace process faces major setback after botched military operation to find terrorists results in bloody gunbattle between government forces, Moro Islamic Liberation Front fighters More

Republicans Expect Long, Expensive Presidential Battle

Political strategist says eventual winner will be one who can put together strongest coalition of various conservative groups that make up Republican Party More

Video New Wheelchair Is Easier to Use, Increases Mobility

Engineers have come up with a lever-operated design that makes use of easily accessible bicycle technology More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grievingi
X
Benno Muchler
March 26, 2015 3:41 PM
Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Liberia's Almost Last Ebola Patient Grateful but Still Grieving

Beatrice Yardolo was to make history as Liberia’s last Ebola patient. Liberians recently started counting down 42 days, the period that has to go by without a single new infection until the World Health Organization can declare a country Ebola-free. That countdown stopped on March 20 when there was another new case of Ebola, making Yardolo’s story a reminder that Ebola is far from over. Benno Muchler reports from Monrovia.
Video

Video Cambodian Land Grabs Threaten Traditional Communities

Indigenous communities in Cambodia's Ratanakiri province say the government’s economic land concession policy is taking away their land and traditional way of life, making many fear that their identity will soon be lost. Local authorities, though, have denied this is the case. VOA's Say Mony went to investigate and filed this report, narrated by Colin Lovett.
Video

Video US, South Korea Conduct Joint Military Exercises

The Eighth U.S. Army Division and the Eighth Republic of Korea Mechanized Infantry Division put on a well orchestrated show of force for the media this week during their joint military training exercises in South Korea. VOA’s Seoul correspondent Brian Padden was there and reports the soldiers were well disciplined both in conducting a complex live fire exercise and in staying on message with the press.
Video

Video Space Program Status Disappoints 'Last Man on the Moon'

One of the films that drew big crowds last week at the annual South by Southwest festival in Austin, Texas, tells the story of the last human being to stand on the moon, U.S. astronaut Eugene Cernan. It has been 42 years since Cernan returned from the moon and he laments that no one else has gone there since. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports.
Video

Video Young Filmmakers Shine Spotlight on Giving Back

A group of student filmmakers from across the United States joined President Barack Obama at the White House this month for the second annual White House Student Film Festival. Fifteen short films were officially selected from more than 1,500 entries by students aged 6 through 18. The filmmakers and their families then joined the president and a group of celebrities for a screening of their films. VOA’s Julie Taboh reports.
Video

Video VOA Exclusive: Interview with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani

Afghan President Ashraf Ghani, during his first visit as president to Washington, gave a one-on-one interview with VOA Afghan Service reporter Said Suleiman Ashna, about his request for a change in U.S. troop levels, the threat from the Islamic State, and repairing relations with the United States and Pakistan. The interview was held at Blair House, late Sunday, in Pashto.
Video

Video California Science Center Tells Story of Dead Sea Scrolls

The ancient manuscripts were uncovered in the mid-20th century, and they are still yielding clues about life and religious beliefs in ancient Israel. As VOA's Mike O'Sullivan reports, an exhibit in Los Angeles shows how modern science is bringing the history of these ancient documents to life.
Video

Video Angelina Jolie Takes Another Bold Step

Hollywood actress and filmmaker Angelina Jolie has revealed she had her ovaries and fallopian tubes removed to lower her odds of getting cancer. Doctors say the huge publicity over her decision will help raise awareness about the importance of cancer screening. VOA’s George Putic has more

All About America

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More