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Russian Foreign Ministry presents White Book on human rights abuses in Ukraine

May 05, 2014, 13:34 UTC+3 MOSCOW

The main task of the White Book is to familiarize the public with real facts and reports on developments in Ukraine

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House of trade unions in Odessa on fire, May 2, 2014

House of trade unions in Odessa on fire, May 2, 2014

© ITAR-TASS/Andrei Borovskiy

MOSCOW, May 05. /ITAR-TASS/. The Russian Foreign Ministry’s ‘White Book’ on large-scale human rights violations in Ukraine has been presented to President Vladimir Putin.

The White Book prepared by the ministry integrates numerous facts of human rights abuses in Ukraine between the end of November 2013 and the end of March 2014, the ministry’s press service says. “It is based on information by Russian, Ukrainian and western media outlets, statements by representatives of the present Kiev authorities and their supporters, eyewitness accounts as well as on-the-spot observations and interviews gathered by Russian non-commercial organizations,” the Kremlin’s official website reported.

“Factual information appearing in the report makes it possible to affirm that grossest violations of the basic principles and norms in the sphere of human rights have become large-scale in Ukraine,” it said.

The main task of the White Book is to familiarize the public with real facts and reports on developments in Ukraine and thus to help shape non-politicized unbiased assessment, reveal and bring to account those responsible for unlawful activity, the Foreign Ministry’s press service said.

The Book consists of several sections. The first of them lists clashes between extremists and law enforcers, and facts of extortion and blackmailing. It also contains evidence of torture of political opponents by extremists who poured gasoline on the former and threatened to set them on fire, beat them with spades and drove needles under their nails.

The second section deals with instances of interference by foreign countries in events in Ukraine, including visits to the Maidan (Kiev’s Independence Square, the scene of confrontation and mass unrest in late 2013 and early 2014) by European Parliament deputies and diplomats from Europe and the United States.

A separate section describes extremists’ tactics used in clashes with law enforcers and is based to a large extent on evidence provided by Ukrainian law enforcers themselves, including members of the Berkut anti-riot police force, which was accused of using violence against “peaceful” demonstrators in Kiev and eventually dissolved.

Another section focuses on censorship in Ukrainian mass media after the coup that brought the opposition to power and forced legitimate Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych to flee the country. It also cites facts of ethnic strife and discrimination on linguistic, ethnic and religious grounds.

“The forceful seizure of power and the anti-constitutional coup in Ukraine led to the collapse of the legitimate system of state power and to lawlessness. The rise of ultranationalist, extremist and neo-Nazi sentiment, religious intolerance and xenophobia, threats and pressure from ‘Euro Maidan’ leaders against their political opponents, purges, repressions, physical violence and downright banditry have become commonplace,” the ministry said.

The Russian State Duma (lower house of parliament) said it would use its parliamentary possibilities to make the facts stated in the White Book widely known.

Human rights violations in Ukraine

April 28, the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs has issued a statement saying that Moscow was deeply concerned by egregious cases of arrests of Ukrainian South-East’s public figures and other facts of human rights violations committed by the Kiev regime.

“The state of Pavel Gubarev, elected as the popular governor of Donetsk raises serious concern,” the statement said. “In early March, he was kidnapped by Kiev’s security forces and for unsubstantiated reasons accused of staging mass riots and attempting to divide Ukraine. Gubarev suffered tortures, and now he is on an ongoing hunger strike.”

The Foreign Ministry drew attention to the fact that Gubarev is far from the only political prisoner of the Kiev regime. “Media reports allow suggesting that the ‘witch hunt’ has begun, as mass prosecution of dissidents, political persecution and repressions against everyone who dares to express disagreement with the power of Maidan,” the ministry stated.

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