UWC urges human rights organizations to act on reports of persecution of human rights lawyers in Crimea
The Ukrainian World Congress (UWC) is very concerned by reports of the persecution of human rights lawyers by the Russian occupying authorities on the Crimean peninsula and urges international human rights organizations to take effective action to protect the rights of the defenders in fulfilling their professional obligations.
Specifically, a lawyer, Nikolai Polozov, was detained for questioning on 25 January 2017 in Simferopol after returning from a session of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, where he reported on political persecution in Crimea.
On 26 January 2017, two lawyers, Edem Semedlyaev and Emil Kurbedinov, were detained and prevented from providing legal assistance to a resident, and their equipment, including storage devices and documents, were seized. Emil Kurbedinov was since charged with the distribution of “extremist materials” and remains under arrest.
“The Ukrainian World Congress condemns the unlawful actions taken by the Russian occupying authorities and urges international human rights organizations to protect the rights of members of the legal profession who provide a service to which every individual must be guaranteed the right,” stated UWC President Eugene Czolij.