Statement of human rights organizations on investigating cases of violation of human rights and civil liberties during the Euro-Maidan rallies

Starting from November 22, the onset of the Ukrainian peaceful protest rallies under the heading of ‘Euro-Maidan’, cases of brutal violation of human rights and freedoms are becoming increasingly frequent in different regions of Ukraine.

Brutality culminated with the forceful dispersal of a peaceful rally on the Independence Square in Kyiv on November 30, 2013 at 4 a.m., and the use of force on December 1, 2013 on Bankova Street in front of the Presidential Administration.

Media, social networks and human rights organizations received reports on dozens of cases of violation of the right to liberty and security, the right to freedom of peaceful assembly, as well as the right to know and the freedom of speech.

These events have already triggered a wave of indignation in the Ukrainian society and scaled-up public protests. Sharing public indignation and concern caused by such actions on the part of the authorities, we believe that every case of such violation should be subject to legal review and criminal proceedings should be initiated against those guilty of human rights violations. In order to do so the maximum amount of reports on human rights violations needs to be collected, verified and assessed without prejudice. However, we do not have any information that the authorities whose duty it is to do this job are actually doing it. Moreover, our experience shows that these authorities are often either not interested or not capable of conducting an effective investigation.

Therefore, we, the undersigned:

  • express our appreciation and support to the Euro-Maidan-SOS civil initiative for collecting information on human rights violations;
  • establish an Independent Public Commission to investigate actions of the authorities in Kyiv and across Ukraine during the Euro-Maidan rallies;
  • invite all human rights organizations and lawyers to participate in the work of the commission;

We call all victims and witnesses of human rights violations to record and maintain all kinds of evidence of such violations. We will be grateful for each testimony regarding the events you have witnessed. All evidence is important to us. Please, submit photos, videos and other materials to [email protected]

We express our condolences to all those who suffered injuries as a result of unlawful violence during the Euro-Maidan rallies.

Arkady Bushchenko, Executive Director, UHHRU

Maxym Butkevych, Co-Coordinator, ‘No Borders’ Project

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