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Declaration of MFA: 77th Anniversary of Deportation of Crimean Tatars

 

On May 18th 1944 then Soviet government deported Crimean Tatars from their home in Crimea to Middle Asia, Siberia and Ural Mountain range. The deportation claimed tens of thousands of human lives. The exile of Crimean Tatars lasted until the end of 1980s when they finally could return back home. Unfortunately, since 2014 they are victims of persecution again, this time in the hands of the Russian Federation.

Russian government began harassment of democratic and pro-Ukrainian population immediately after annexation of Crimea in 2014. Crimean Tatars were obviously among the first targets because of their refusal to accept occupation. Russian government forced closure of informal Tatar Parliament “Medzhlis”, while many Tatars including top leaders faced detention and tens of thousands were forced to leave their homes.

Number of Crimean Tatars who stayed and never accepted occupation, are imprisoned right now - in Crimea as well as in Russia. These political prisoners are falsely accused, tortured and inhumanely treated during interrogations and imprisonment. We have learned of more than one hundred of such cases. Even more Tatars are exposed to permanent pressure and intimidation. Russia willfully ignores the calls of international bodies such as Council of Europe, United Nations to release the prisoners and to respect basic human rights.

Moreover, Russian government plans several judicial hearings on Russia´s territory in Rostov with falsely accused Crimean Tatars - timed exactly to the day for the anniversary of the deportation of Crimean Tatars.

Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Czech Republic is hereby declaring its full respect to the victims of deportations. MFA endorses and supports efforts of Crimean Tatar Nation in their fight for freedom. MFA further strongly deplores permanent violations of human rights of Crimean Tatars as well as other persecuted Ukrainian citizens in Crimea.

Czech Republic fully endorses sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine. We will never accept illegal annexation of Crimea. We call upon Russian government to cease violating the rights of Ukrainians in Crimea, to immediately release all political prisoners and to end occupation of Ukrainian territory.

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