GENEVA / OHCHR REPORT UKRAINE

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09-Oct-2023 00:03:10
Abuses range from widespread torture and arbitrary detention to conflict-related sexual violence which continue to be committed in Ukraine after one and a half years following the Russian Federation’s full-scale invasion, said the UN deputy rights chief. UNTV CH

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STORY: GENEVA / OHCHR REPORT UKRAINE
TRT: 03:14
SOURCE: UNTV CH
RESTRICTIONS: NONE
LANGUAGE: ENGLISH / RUSSIAN / NATS

DATELINE: 09 OCTOBER 2023 GENEVA, SWITZERLAND / FILE

SHOTLIST:

FILE - GENEVA, SWITZERLAND

1. Wide shot, Palais des Nations, Geneva

09 OCTOBER 2023 GENEVA, SWITZERLAND

2. Wide shot: Human Rights Council room
3. SOUNDBITE (English) Nada Al-Nashif, UN Deputy High Commissioner for Human Rights, (OHCHR):
“From the 1st of February to the 31st of July of this year, another 4621 civilians fell victim to this conflict, with 1028 killed, 3593 injured. Most of these documented casualties occurred in territory controlled by Ukraine. The actual figures are likely higher, as many reports of civilian casualties are still pending corroboration, and OHCHR does not have access to the occupied territory of Ukraine and limited access to the areas close to the frontline.”
4. Med shot, Human Rights Council room
5. SOUNDBITE (English) Nada Al-Nashif, UN Deputy High Commissioner for Human Rights, (OHCHR):
“Our March report on the treatment of prisoners of war and persons hors de combat as well as our June report on detention of civilians in the context of the armed attack by the Russian Federation against Ukraine, show that Russian authorities use of torture and ill treatment against both civilians and prisoners of war has been widespread.”
6. Med shot, Human Rights Council room
7. SOUNDBITE (English) Nada Al-Nashif, UN Deputy High Commissioner for Human Rights, (OHCHR):
“OHCHR documented five acts of conflict[1]related sexual violence by members of Russian armed forces and Russian penitentiary services.”
8. Wide shot, Human Rights Council room
9. SOUNDBITE (English) Nada Al-Nashif, UN Deputy High Commissioner for Human Rights, (OHCHR):
“OHCHR remains gravely concerned that there is no established system to return Ukrainian children who were transferred to other regions in Russian occupied territory or to the Russian Federation. Among the children who reunited with their family after relatives travelled to the Russian Federation to retrieve them, some have described experiencing or witnessing psychological or physical violence by educational staff there.”
10. Wide shot, Human Rights Council room
11. SOUNDBITE (English) Nada Al-Nashif, UN Deputy High Commissioner for Human Rights, (OHCHR):
“Following its withdrawal from this lifeline agreement, we have seen an increase in the number of attacks by the Russian Federation that affect infrastructure related to grain export. Some of these attacks also cause damage to surrounding civilian infrastructure and Odessa's historic buildings.”
12. Wide shot, Human Rights Council room
13. SOUNDBITE (English) Emine Dzhaparova, First Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs, Ukraine:
“Arbitrary and incommunicado detention of civilians, the policy of mass conferral of Russian citizenship, harassment and criminal prosecution, forceful conscription to the Russian army remain part and parcel of Russia's control over Ukrainian temporarily occupied territories, including my beloved homeland Crimea.”
14. Wide shot, Human Rights Council room
15. SOUNDBITE (Russian) Yaroslav Eremin, Counsellor, Permanent Mission of the Russian Federation to the UN in Geneva:
“We fundamentally disagree with the methodology, content and conclusions to yet another OHCHR report. Instead of acting in line with its mandate and fully describing the deteriorating human rights situation in Ukraine, the OHCHR is continuing to whitewash Kiev and shifting the blame for the crimes of the Ukrainian authorities on our country. Such an approach is unacceptable for a UN Secretariat.”
16. Med shot, Human Rights Council room
17. Close shot, Human Rights Council room
18. Wide shot, Human Rights Council room
19. Close shot, Human Rights Council room
20. Medium shot, Human Rights Council room


STORYLINE:

Abuses range from widespread torture and arbitrary detention to conflict-related sexual violence which continue to be committed in Ukraine after one and a half years following the Russian Federation’s full-scale invasion, said the UN deputy rights chief on Monday (09 Oct).

“From first February to 31 July 2023, another 4,621 civilians fell victim to this conflict, with 1,028 killed and 3,593 injured,“ said Al-Nashif when presenting the latest report of the Human Rights Monitoring Mission in Ukraine to the Human Rights Council in Geneva. “Most of these documented casualties occurred in territory controlled by Ukraine. The actual figures are likely higher, as many reports of civilian casualties are still pending corroboration and OHCHR does not have access to the occupied territory of Ukraine and limited access to the areas close to the frontline”.

The report’s findings are the result of 117 field visits, 27 inspections of detention centres, 28 visits to care institutions or shelters, the observation of 23 trial hearings, and insights gained from 1,226 interviews with victims, witnesses, relatives and legal representatives.
The report concludes that torture remains a brutal reality for civilians and prisoners of war held by Russian authorities.

“Our March report on the treatment of prisoners of war and persons hors de combat as well as our June report on detention of civilians in the context of the armed attack by the Russian Federation against Ukraine, show that Russian authorities use of torture and ill treatment against both civilians and prisoners of war has been widespread,” said Al-Nashif.
The testimonies of survivors describe “a cruelty that is difficult to imagine, including terrifying accounts of electric shocks, sexual violence and severe beatings, which in some instances led to broken bones and smashed teeth.”

Previously documented patterns of sexual violence, primarily involving Russian armed forces, law enforcement authorities and penitentiary staff continue to consist, according to Al-Nashif. Between 1 February to 31 July 2023 “OHCHR documented five acts of conflict related sexual violence by members of Russian armed forces and Russian penitentiary services.”

The UN Human Rights Office “remains gravely concerned that there is no established system to return Ukrainian children who were transferred to other regions in Russian occupied territory or to the Russian Federation.”

Among the children who reunited with their family after relatives travelled to the Russian Federation to retrieve them, “some have described experiencing or witnessing psychological or physical violence by educational staff there,” so the report.

The report deplores that “Russian authorities have taken no discernible steps to ensure accountability for violations committed by their own security forces.” On the contrary, a new law adopted in June 2023 effectively grants amnesty to Russian servicepersons for an overly broad range of crimes, reinforcing an atmosphere of impunity.

The report also emphasized devastating long-term effects that will be felt by the collapse of the Black Sea Grain Initiative, the deal which allowed the resumption of Ukrainian grain exports via the Black Sea amid the ongoing war. “Following its withdrawal from this lifeline agreement, we have seen an increase in the number of attacks by the Russian Federation that affect infrastructure related to grain export,"said Al-Nashif. "Some of these attacks also cause damage to surrounding civilian infrastructure and Odessa's historic buildings.”

Speaking from Ukraine to the Human Rights Council, the country’s First Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs, Emine Dzhaparova, raised concern about the “arbitrary and incommunicado detention of civilians, the policy of mass conferral of Russian citizenship, harassment and criminal prosecution, forceful conscription to the Russian army remain part and parcel of Russia's control over Ukrainian temporarily occupied territories, including my beloved homeland Crimea.”

The representative of the Permanent Mission of the Russian Federation to the UN in Geneva, Yaroslav Eremin, “fundamentally disagree(d) with the methodology, content and conclusions to yet another OHCHR report.”

“Instead of acting in line with its mandate and fully describing the deteriorating human rights situation in Ukraine, the OHCHR is continuing to whitewash Kiev and shifting the blame for the crimes of the Ukrainian authorities on our country,” he said.
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