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Russia refuses to help Ukraine in deportation of Crimean Tatars investigation, - prosecutor's office

Neither Uzbekistan nor Kazakhstan responded to requests from the Prosecutor’s Office of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea
19:54, 18 May 2019
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Open source
The Russian Federation has refused to provide the Autonomous Republic of Crimea Prosecutor’s Office with archival documents to investigate the case of the Crimean Tatars deportation. This was stated in the commentary of the Crimea's Prosecutor Gunduz Mamedov to Interfax-Ukraine.

"Today, the main challenge in this criminal proceedings is to obtain documents from the countries where the crime was committed in order to conduct a forensic examination," he said.

According to Mamedov, the prosecutor's office sent requests for international legal assistance to Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan and Russia to obtain copies of the necessary archival documents, identifying and interrogating possible witnesses.

"Unfortunately, today, after repeated reminder letters, neither Uzbekistan nor Kazakhstan provided this information, and the Russian Federation refused. In particular, the letter of the Russian Federation indicated that the provision of such information contradicts the interests of the national security," he specified.

At the same time, Mamedov added that recently the Prosecutor’s Office of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea, through the Prosecutor General’s Office, sent new international legal orders to Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan with the same requests to law enforcement officers.

"We need to put a legal period in this criminal procedure and, if possible, in particular, an international period. For the sake of restoring justice and preventing similar crimes in the future," he stressed.

Related: Ukraine to create delegation for negotiations with the UK about cooperation after Brexit

Today, on May 18, Ukraine marks the anniversary of the 1944 deportation of Crimean Tatars. The deportation of the Crimean Tatars was the ethnic cleansing of at least 191,044 Crimean Tatars on 18-20 May 1944; one of the crimes of the Soviet totalitarian regime. That day, the Soviet authorities deported the Tatars from the Crimean peninsula to Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, and Tajikistan. Small groups of people were also sent to the Mari Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic, to the Urals and to the Kostroma region of Russia.

A new challenge for the Crimean Tatars started after Russia's annexation of Crimea in March 2014. Some of them left the peninsula because of persecution, others suffering from raids, trials, and detentions. Some received a ban to the entry to Crimea, including the leaders of the Crimean Tatars Mustafa Dzhemilev and Refat Chubarov.

The struggle of the Tatar people for their land and their rights continues to this day.

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