Crimean Tatars, who were the first to oppose the annexation of the peninsula, continue to be persecuted by the Russian authorities. According to Refat Chubarov, Mejlis Chairman, Russia’s policy towards other nations will remain unchanged for as long as Putin is in power.

“Russia is increasingly turning into a fascist state, and there is neither exaggeration nor political pathos in my words. Even their laws propagate ideas that could throw Russia back to the Stalin's times. This is precisely how they are acting in our own and occupied territories,” Chubarov said.

Mejlis Chairman is positive that Russia is pursuing a policy of artificial deportation of the indigenous people of Crimea and their replacement with Russian citizens.

“Russia will continue to force those disloyal to the occupation authorities out of Crimea. These are primarily the Crimean Tatars, as well as those who remain faithful to Ukraine and do not recognize occupation. And they will be using any pretext to simultaneously bring in Russian citizens from the mainland in large numbers,” said Chubarov.

According to Refat Chubarov, something like this has long been happening at law enforcement agencies, Prosecutor's Office, the Federal Security Service, courts and investigative committees, which personnel have been replaced with Russians, who were moved to Crimea together with their families. Moreover, the Russian authorities have officially stated that more than ten thousand managerial positions in Crimea remain unfilled due to the shortage of qualified personnel.

“By changing the ethnic and religious make-up of the occupied territory the invaders are committing a crime,” Chubarov said.