HRC52 – Item 10 – Interactive Dialogue – Ukraine

31 March 2023

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We recently marked nine years since Russian forces occupied Crimea and have subsequently witnessed widespread human rights violations committed against civil society.

Since the full-scale invasion of Ukraine by Russian forces on 24 February last year, Crimea has been used as a base for attacks against civilian infrastructure in other regions of Ukraine. 

Our civil society partners in Ukraine have also witnessed that the patterns of human rights violations that have occurred in Crimea over the last nine years are now being perpetrated in the newly occupied territories of Ukraine.


Among the more than 150 Crimean political prisoners, we are particularly concerned about Iryna Danilovych, a Ukrainian citizen journalist, who faced fabricated charges and was sentenced to seven years for political reasons in Crimea, and is now suffering with serious health problems.

Iryna Danilovych was imprisoned in April last year and has been subjected to torture, has almost lost her hearing, constantly suffers headaches, has problems with coordination, and believes she has had at least one micro-stroke in prison. Instead of providing medical aid, “authorities” of the pre-trial detention center told her: “cut your veins” and refused to call for an independent doctor. She has demanded an end to her ill-treatment and started a dry hunger strike on 21 March, in her words: “until medical aid is provided or until my biological death”.

We call on the immediate hospitalization and exoneration of Danilovych and we ask the High Commissioner what more can be done to assist political prisoners like Iryna Danilovych, who are in urgent need of medical attention alongside other support.

Thank you.