Ukraine wants UN to resume its mission on Olenivka – Ukrainian Ombudsman


Ukrainian government wants the United Nations to resume its mission to investigate the terrorist attack in Olenivka that took place there last year.

Commissioner for Human Rights Dmytro Lubinets said this during a panel discussion “A year without punishment. The Road to Justice” dedicated to the anniversary of the Olenivka tragedy, an Ukrinform correspondent reports.

“We continue to insist that the mission on the tragedy in Olenivka be resumed by the United Nations and that representatives of this mission must come to Ukraine,” he said.

Lubinets said that the Ukrainian side, for its part, is ready to provide any assistance to this mission, in particular, to provide its expert research and everything necessary to establish the truth and bring Russia to justice.

Read also: Olenivka: year after Russian terrorist attack

Answering the question of whether there is an alternative to the UN mission, the Ombudsman said that there is the International Criminal Court (ICC), which can do this.

According to him, there are a number of international human rights organizations that can also come to Ukraine.

The Human Rights Ombudsman noted that the Ukrainian authorities invite everyone and are ready to provide any of the interested parties with their materials and expert opinions to establish additional expert reports from anyone who is ready to do so.

“I mean, there is probably always an alternative. But the UN is a unique organization, and we primarily demand that they do this work,” Lubinets said.

He also noted that, unfortunately, the Ombudsman’s Office is constantly fighting with the ICRC to legally recognize the fact that their representatives are not allowed to visit the places of detention of prisoners of war in Olenivka.

Read also: Explosion in Olenivka caused by thermobaric grenade launcher – Prosecutor General’s Office

“Unfortunately, the ICRC always explains that ‘we are neutral and we cannot condemn Russia’. In my opinion, this neutrality prevents them from fulfilling their mandate. They should not be neutral, but objective,” the Ombudsman said.

According to the Ombudsman, if the Russian Federation did not allow representatives of this organization to enter Olenivka, then nothing prevents the ICRC from writing that the Russian Federation did not allow them to go there.

He is convinced that it is necessary to show the world that Ukraine will not let the world forget about the tragedy in Olenivka.

“Our task is to make sure that those responsible, those who planned this war crime on the part of the Russian Federation, the highest military-political leadership, are punished and convicted. Even if we are clearly aware that they may not be physically tried – perhaps in another way, for example, in absentia – but legally it must be done,” Lubinets said.

Read also: Head, inspector of colony in Olenivka served suspicion notices in absentia

The Ombudsman assured that the Ukrainian authorities will do everything to ensure that this happens in the future.

As reported, on the night of July 29, 2022, the Russian Federation committed a terrorist attack by exploding a barracks in the penal colony in Olenivka, where Ukrainian prisoners of war were held. At least 50 Azovstal defenders were killed.

Source: Ukraine wants UN to resume its mission on Olenivka - Ukrainian Ombudsman

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