Declaration of political prisoners in Ukraine

Appeal of the Tornado Volunteer Battalion soldiers to the public and political leaders of Ukraine

Many people thought that the political repressions would be forgotten after theRevolution of Dignity and shooting of the Heavenly Hundred in Ukraine. However, hundreds of Ukrainian volunteers, military men, and simply patriots were put into Ukrainian prisons in a gradual and planned manner.

The interim government has already started the offensive pressure on its political opponents. There is no reason to believe that Poroshenko’s regime will somehow be able to stop in creating an authoritarian system like the Russian one. All these processes will only intensify.

The political prisoners, who are now in the Lukianivka pre-trial detention center in Kyiv have gone on the mass hunger strike as a protest against the justifiable outrage in the state and violation of the human rights by the interim government of Ukraine.

The People of Ukraine can overcome the power of collaborators and thieves, headed by the usurper of Petro Poroshenko’s authority. In the conditions of the Russian aggression and political repressions, the People of Ukraine need the support of the international democratic society.

We have no right to keep silence! The world should know about this.

Below is the interpretation of the appeal of the “Tornado” volunteer battalion soldiers to the public and political leaders in Ukraine.

 

APPEAL TO THE PUBLIC AND POLITICAL LEADERS IN UKRAINE

During the events that took place in the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine on May 18, 2017, namely, the adoption by the deputies of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine of amendments to Article 72 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine (Savchenko Law) in violation of the Constitution of Ukraine.

We, the Citizens of Ukraine, Patriots – volunteers and Ukrainian political prisoners recognized by the society of Ukraine, while remaining faithful to the oath made to the faith of the People of Ukraine, consider it our direct duty to take necessary and all the possible measures to prevent the entry of these amendments into legal force and subsequent entry of the amended Law into force in relation to the applicable legislation.

We are sure that the amendments to Article 72 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine, as adopted by the deputies of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine, not only trample upon and finally discredit the rights of the Citizens of Ukraine, but actually eliminate the notion of humanity, contradict the Constitution of Ukraine and in fact legalize and promote the corruption in the Ukrainian courts. They also require complete reformation, because they have long wallowed into the total corruption and bribery. As a result, they have almost nothing in common with the rule of law and the protection of the legal rights of the Ukrainian citizens in a manner established by the Law of Ukraine, the Constitution of Ukraine and the European Convention on Human Rights, which is their direct functional duty in accordance with the Constitution of Ukraine!

In point of fact:

On May 18, 2017, the deputies of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine adopted the Resolution of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine dated May 18, 2017 on the adoption of the draft Law of Ukraine on Amendments to the Criminal Code of Ukraine (regarding the rules for punishment and inclusion of pre-trial detention term) (registration number 5534) as the basis and in general.

Regarding the above amendments to the “Savchenko Law“, which somehow balanced and humanized the underworked system of pre-trial detention (in a detention centre) in inhumane conditions and the judicial system of Ukraine, by means of which the arrested are, in fact, forced to stay in pre-trial detention facilities for years without sentences, while the investigation is carried out or investigators delay the judicial examination, prosecutors and judicial authorities due to the debility, inability and corruption of the system of justice, which has been requiring outrageously its complete reformation.

In view of the fact that the Law of Ukraine on Preliminary Detention, Standards for the Treatment of Prisoners in Ukraine, Internal Regulations in Pre-trial Detention Centres of the State Penitentiary Service of Ukraine, Rules for Retaining Prisoners in Custody are not only unacceptable for the entire civilized world, but reasonably result in direct psychological pressure on the arrested due to artificial conditions, and also to physical and mental suffering, humiliation of the human dignity, creation of the sense of shame and depression for the same reasons, which, in general, are equal to torturing in accordance with a numerous resolutions of the European Court of Human Rights.

Taking into account the fact that the whole system of pre-trial detention and detention of suspected persons in custody is the Soviet Union heritage, they not only do not comply with the regulations of the International Convention on Human Rights, which was also ratified by Ukraine and binds the state to protect the human rights in Ukraine, but also directly obliges to implement the above regulations and laws of the Convention.

Instead, on May 18, 2017, the deputies of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine, in violation of the duties assigned to them by the Ukrainian citizens made amendments to the “Savchenko Law”, which somehow compensated the horrible conditions that urgently require complete reformation: the regulations for the detention, freedoms of imprisoned citizens, based on the provisions of the Constitution of Ukraine and the International Convention on Human Rights defy the concept of humanity and rights in a rule-of-law state.

Taking into account the fact that the Ukrainian citizens are prisoners of such a terrible situation, because they are placed in the above conditions of torture chambers by force, in a seemingly “legal” way, the state itself to be responsible for adopting regulations, reforms and protecting the rights of the Ukrainian citizens in accordance with the Constitution of Ukraine, is in fact the executioner that tramples upon the rights and freedoms in violation of the Constitution of Ukraine, which in general contradicts the common sense.

Instead, to alleviate the terrible situation, in this case, considering the lack of appropriate reforms, the need for which confirmed by numerous recommendations from the international community:

  • The European Convention on Human Rights,
  • European Penitentiary Rules and Standards,
  • UN Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners,
  • Protocol No. 2 to the European Convention for the Prevention of Tortures and Inhuman Treatment,
  • Practice and numerous resolutions of the European Court of Human Rights, which satisfied the complaints of the Ukrainian citizens against Ukraine regarding improper conditions of detention.
  • Inadequate conditions of detention (Resolution of the ECHR on the following cases):
  1. Yakovenko vs. Ukraine. Application No. 15825/06, paras. 56–61, 75–76.
  2. Kokshin vs. Ukraine. Application No. 43707/07, paras. 39–42.
  3. Melnik vs. Ukraine. paras. 69–71, 97.
  4. Logvynenko vs. Ukraine. paras. 57.
  5. Iglin vs. Ukraine. paras. 43
  6. Bieliayev and Digtiar vs. Ukraine. paras. 30–31.
  7. Smirkov vs. Ukraine.
  8. Tytarenko vs. Ukraine. Application No. 31720/02.
  • Recommendations of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe on the use of detention, conditions under which it takes place and the introduction of appropriate guarantees,
  • International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights,
  • Recommendations of the European Committee for the prevention of tortures and inhuman or humiliating conduct, treatment of punishment,
  • Recommendations of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe on the detention until the sentence imposition,
  • Recommendations of the Fifth UN Congress on the Prevention of Crime and the Treatment of Prisoners,
  • European standards for counteracting the ill-treatment.

However, instead of fulfilling its direct duties for improving, reforming and adopting adequate actions aimed at solving and improving the situation of “servants of the people”, they make decisions that direct the state of affairs in relation to the above issues and exacerbate the very bitter situation: As to the right of the Ukrainian citizens and the rule of law, in total, in Ukraine as a whole. From among numerous acknowledgments of the urgent need for reforms by the international community, the so-called Savchenko Law was intended to resolve the bitter situation of the Ukrainian citizens somehow and lied in compensating the arrested for unjustified suffering for the reasons and inconveniences beyond their control, which are recognized by the civilized society as follows:

However, instead of fulfilling its direct duties for improving, reforming and adopting adequate actions aimed at solving and improving the situation of “servants of the people”, they make decisions that direct the state of affairs in relation to the above issues and exacerbate the very bitter situation: As to the right of the Ukrainian citizens and the rule of law, in total, in Ukraine as a whole. From among numerous acknowledgments of the urgent need for reforms by the international community, the so-called Savchenko Law was intended to resolve the bitter situation of the Ukrainian citizens somehow and lied in compensating the arrested for unjustified suffering for the reasons and inconveniences beyond their control, which are recognized by the civilized society as follows:

  • Unjustified and unsatisfactory,
  • Have a harmful effect on the mental state,
  • Create a sense of humiliation,
  • Unjustifiably suppress a person,
  • Result in physical suffering and have a profoundly negative impact on the health of the arrested,
  • Inhumane because detention conditions do not comply with the principles of humanity and morality neither following the international law nor the Constitution of Ukraine,

As a whole, they equated to the abuse and tortures by various resolutions of the ECHR in the cases of the Ukrainian citizens against Ukraine.

Such conditions of the long-term retention of the Ukrainian arrested at pre-trial detention centers, who wait for sentences for years include as follows:

  1. Unsatisfactory condition of premises (mold, dampness and unsanitary conditions),
  2. Insufficient ventilation of premises where the prisoners stay,
  3. Inadequate heating in winter because of the old, rotten and silted heating system,
  4. Lack of continuous water supply because the water supply system is in a terrible condition, old and rotten. It is almost impossible to drink water because it does not meet the sanitary standards,
  5. Lack of hot water supply, which makes it significantly difficult for detained persons to comply with the sanitary standards of personal hygiene,
  6. Once-week shower due to the absence of hot water,
  7. Opportunity to wash dirty clothes is given once a week, and this has a severe impact on sanitary conditions of premises and personal hygiene of the arrested in conditions of crowded places,
  8. Impossibility to walk in the fresh air for a sufficient amount of time due to the lack of necessary rules and conditions (walking – 1 hour per day),
  9. The lack of regulations and relevant inventory, insufficient movement in a limited space over an extended period results in the muscular atrophy and numerous other diseases and disorders of the citizens, which become chronic in the conditions of long-term detention,
  10. Lack of appropriate conditions, diagnostics and satisfactory medical treatment of chronic diseases following latest medical standards,
  11. Insufficient and poor food together with the strict unreasonable limitation of the list of foodstuffs allowed to be transferred to the arrested,
  12. Prohibition to use microwave ovens, steamers and relevant utensils and lack of conditions for cooking and rewarming the food,
  13. Lack of appropriate standards and conditions for storing foodstuffs received in the form of parcels, wrappers or packages,
  14. Lack of standards and normal conditions for meeting with relatives and the family, which worsens the psychological and mental state of the arrested for a long time and is the unjustified cruelty. Meetings conducted through glass and cage,
  15. Lack of communication with relatives and the family in a civilized up-to-date way that meets the up-to-date standards of the developed countries, utilizing free access to mobile communication,
  16. Unjustified limitation of technical conditions when communicating with a human rights defender in investigation rooms (work on a case and implementation of human rights activities), which significantly impedes the exercise of own defense in a court, etc.,
  17. Lack of adequate nutrition in courts provided that the arrested have to stay there full day,
  18. Lack of places for making relevant records on cases, reading and work with materials in court buildings where the arrested remain in the course of proceedings, as well as in courtrooms,
  19. Intellectual degradation resulted from the multi-year lack of free access to information, its exchange with human rights defenders in a civilized and up-to-date digital manner, the absence of information from current Internet resources through the use of electronic books, pads that meet modern standards of the civilized developed countries.

It also considerably complicates the work with documents, their exchange with human rights defenders, obtaining of additional necessary information, and most importantly, the constitutional right of the citizens to their defense in a court is limited and complicated unreasonably and artificially by such an artificial conduct. This condition contradicts the Constitution of Ukraine and the international law.

Taking into account the extremely criminal, illegal and unacceptable situation that abuses, humiliates and degrades the human dignity and explicitly violates the rights of the Ukrainian citizens guaranteed by the Constitution of Ukraine,

Which is a crime and unconditional fact in accordance with a numerous conclusions of international human rights organizations, regulations of the European Convention on Human Rights, as well as not less various resolutions and recommendations of the ECHR for illegal activities, inhuman treatment, violation of the rights and freedoms of the Ukrainian citizens by the judicial and executive authorities in Ukraine,

Which do not comply apparently with and fail to fulfil their direct functions assigned to them in accordance with the regulations of the Constitution of Ukraine on the protection of the rights and freedoms of the Ukrainian citizens, but instead of protecting the rights and liberties of the Ukrainian citizens guaranteed by the Constitution, they trample and abuse in violation of the laws of Ukraine; and this is the Illegal and criminal activity against the Ukrainian citizens and their rights and freedoms guaranteed and protected by the Constitution. As a consequence, it is made impossible to implement the rule of law, implementation of the standards, rights, and freedoms of the Citizens in the manner guaranteed by the law and the Constitution. Such situation distorts and undermines the constitutional order in the state and the rule of law as such, and has disgraceful consequences that recognized as inhuman.

We, the Citizens of Ukraine, Patriots – Volunteers, who made an oath to the faith of the People of Ukraine and acknowledged by the Ukrainian society, Political Prisoners of Ukraine, without having any other way established by the law to defend the rule of law, human dignity, rights and freedoms guaranteed by the Constitution of Ukraine, consider our direct Public duty to take appropriate measures to protect and restore the legal rights guaranteed by the Constitution of Ukraine.

Based on the above mentioned, we are forced to go on the indefinite hunger strike.

Taking into account the above mentioned, we DEMAND:

  1. a meeting with the Human Right Commissioner of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine;
  2. formation of a relevant committee from among human rights defenders, deputies and representatives of public organizations of Ukraine to protect the legal rights and freedoms of the Ukrainian citizens to investigate the critical situation of the judicial and executive system of Ukraine and its further urgent reformation, which is already absolutely necessary.

If additional measures are required, a notification will be made following the relevant procedure.

 

SOLDIERS OF VOLUNTEER BATTALION TORNADO

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