Ukrainian World Congress reaffirms strong commitment to return of illegally occupied Crimea to Ukraine
Two years ago, on 26 February 2014, Russian forces invaded the Ukrainian territory of Crimea, activating a chain of events leading to their forceful and illegal occupation of the peninsula, their armed aggression in Eastern Ukraine, and in blatant violation of the Minsk Agreements, their daily shelling of the Ukrainian side that continues to take the lives of innocent Ukrainian men, women and children.
The international community condemned this Russian aggression as the world reeled from the most blatant violations since the Second World War of the norms of international law, including the UN Charter, the 1975 Helsinki Accords and the 2004 Budapest Memorandum on Security Assurances.
This meditated act of armed aggression and occupation of Crimea has caused the violation of fundamental human rights, including basic civil, political, and social rights, of every Ukrainian citizen on the peninsula. Ukrainians and Crimean Tatars are denied freedom of speech, assembly, and worship. Residents of Crimea are subjected to persecution for their beliefs, language and identity, while their access to the outside world is restricted.
“The Ukrainian World Congress (UWC) reaffirms its strong commitment to the Ukrainian people to maintain the focus of the international community on the importance of the return to Ukraine of the illegally occupied Crimea, and to protect the human rights and fundamental freedoms of its residents,” stated UWC President Eugene Czolij.