The US is concerned about the significant deterioration of human rights situation occupied by Russia Crimea, in particular, the increasing number of Crimean Tatars who are persecuted for refusing to support the occupants.
This was announced by the US Ambassador to OSCE Daniel Baer at a meeting of the OSCE Permanent Council in Vienna, reports Ukrinform agency.
"The total number of Crimean Tatars who are harassed and falsely charged of "extremism" or " terrorism" has risen to 21 last week after the new police raids on homes of Tatars that took place on November 17," the US representative said.
Russia cut off access to public institutions, to education and health institutions for those Ukrainians who refused to accept Russian citizenship, he also stressed.
"At least 30 thousand of Crimean residents or probably even more have moved to other regions of Ukraine, fearing reprisals for their political or journalistic work or for their pro-Ukrainian views," the American diplomat stated.
Sanctions against Russia that are related to Crimea will remain in force until Russia stops the occupation and Crimea annexation and return control of the territory to Ukraine, Baer said.
Earlier it was reported that Russia puts Ukraine as enemy of Crimea. The Kremlin authorities detain Ukrainians and thus try to frighten people in the occupied Crimea.