US makes statement on Russia's court decision to ban Mejlis

The US Department of State urged Russia to immediately stop the persecution of the Crimean Tatar people.

1 October 2016 15:36

The United States does not recognize the legitimacy of the decision of the RF Supreme Court to ban the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar people, US State Department spokesman Mark Toner announced on Friday, Sept. 30, according to the website of the US Foreign Service.

"We reject the characterization of the Mejlis as an ‘extremist’ organization and condemn the suspension of this democratic institution. This decision is particularly troubling given Russia’s systematic and unjust mistreatment of Crimean Tatars," said Mark Toner.

The US Department of State also condemned the arbitrary arrests, kidnappings, politically motivated arrests, and restrictions on freedom of movement, as well as searches of homes and mosques - which Russia carries out against the Crimean Tatars - and we call on Russia to cease these unacceptable practices immediately.

"We do not recognize Russia’s attempted annexation of Crimea, and we reiterate our call on Russia to return control of the peninsula to Ukraine," said Toner, adding that the Crimea-related sanctions will remain in place until that time.

September 29, the Supreme Court of Russia held a meeting on the case "On the prohibition of the activities of the public association 'Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar people' under the Article 9 of the Federal Law of 25.07.2002, No.1145-FL'On counteracting extremist activity.'"

The panel of judges of the Supreme Court of Russia in Moscow banned the activity of the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar people on the territory of the Russian Federation and occupied Crimea.

Following the ruling by the Supreme Court of the Russian Federation to ban the Mejlis, Refat Chubarov - Chairman of the Crimean Tatar representative body - said that real prison terms threaten the Crimean Tatars for their involvement in the Mejlis activities.

The EU Ambassador to Ukraine Hugues Mingarelli said that Russian ban on the Crimean Tatar Mejlis is a serious attack on the rights of the Crimean Tatars, while the Russian Federation is obliged to fully ensure them in conformity with international law.

The Ministry for the Temporarily Occupied Territories and Internally Displaced Persons of Ukraine issued a statement drawing attention of the international community to the ruling by the Russian court, which violates the rights of the Crimean Tatar people.

Ambassador of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland in Ukraine Judith Gough expressed concern about the decision of the RF Supreme Court upholding the ban on the Crimean Tatar Mejlis.

Photo: Internet