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‘Bias, double standards’: Moscow bewildered by UN aide’s remarks on Ukraine

Published time: March 18, 2014 01:54
United Nations Assistant Secretary-General for Human Rights Ivan Simonovic (AFP Photo / Phill Moore)

United Nations Assistant Secretary-General for Human Rights Ivan Simonovic (AFP Photo / Phill Moore)

Russia’s Foreign Ministry described remarks on the situation in Ukraine, made by UN Assistant Secretary-General for Human Rights Ivan Simonovic as “biased” and accused the official of double standards.

"We are bewildered and cannot conceive the biased, prejudiced and nonobjective assessment by Simonovic of the human rights situation in this country [Ukraine]," reads statement issued by the ministry on Monday.

Russian diplomats were indignant with the fact that the UN aide “only softly admonished a little group of politicians [in Kiev] for kindling hatred”, while at the same time expressed much graver concern with human rights situation in Crimea.

The high-ranking UN official preferred not to notice killings, mass reprisals, torture, kidnappings, attacks on journalists and human rights advocates, arrests for political motives, blatant outbreaks of obviously racist - including anti-Russian and anti-Semitic - nature, which happen either on orders or with silent consent of the people who seized power in Kiev,” the Foreign Ministry said.

On Friday Simonovic announced the immediate deployment of a UN monitoring team throughout crisis-torn Ukraine to help establish the facts surrounding alleged human rights violations, including in Crimea. Assessing the situation on the peninsula he said his team had access to “several reliable sources and extensive one-on-one discussions with individuals who are in and from Crimea.”

I am gravely concerned about the situation in Crimea, where there appears to be no rule of law at present, and therefore a drastic deterioration in the protection of human rights, as well as rampant fear and insecurity due to misinformation, blocking of information and total uncertainty about what is coming next,” he said.

Moscow has described Simonovic’s remarks on Crimea as dictated by “fake concern”.

“We would like to remind Mr. Simonovic not only of the guarantees, which the Republic’s authorities are giving and will give in the future to the Crimean Tatar minority, but also of the fact that Crimea is currently likely the only place that maintained law and order.”

The Russian Foreign Ministry believes Simonovic discredited the UN Secretariat, having put to doubt its neutrality, independence and good conscience.

On Monday Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a decree recognizing Crimea as a sovereign and independent state. The Autonomous Republic of Crimea held a referendum on Sunday with over 96 percent voting for integration into Russia.

Comments (199)


Nathan Broczek 17.04.2014 00:40

Lol I had to laugh at the part that "whoever arms protesters is at fault". Didn't the maidan protesters effectively arm themselves with an entire army when they forced themselves into power in Kiev?


Dmitry 20.03.2014 04:32

What "biased attitude"you are speaking about?
There are about 120 STATE LAWS and Acts against Russian speaking people in Ukraine.


Yaroslava Lyashenko 20.03.2014 01:04

oh, jesus, not this again. I speak russian my whole life, i come from a russian-speaking family from a russian-speaking city. What does he call an attack on the russian-speaking people? an anecdote about putin or smth?... I have to say, his statement IS really biased. They look at you when you speak russian in the west, and they look at you when you speak ukrainian in the east. it's 50/50.

View all comments (199)
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