President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky allegedly abolished the institution of the Presidential Commissioner for the Affair of the Crimean Tatar People - such information has appeared recently in some media outlets with reference to the first convocation MP Valery Ivasyuk. It was massively disseminated by Russian and separatist sites.
The ex-MP also recalled that the leader of the Crimean Tatars, People’s Deputy Mustafa Jemilev, who was authorized under Petro Poroshenko, no longer occupies this post after the election of a new president.
However, if Jemilev’s resignation was fixed by a corresponding presidential decree, the 2014 decree on the introduction of the post of Crimean Tatars Commissioner was not officially canceled, and at the moment it is listed in the Ukrainian legislation base as valid.
Whether the institution of the Crimean Tatars Commissioner is currently operating, QHA media has questioned Mustafa Jemilev, who held this position for the past five years - until May of this year.
“Ivasyuk on the program 'Most' talked something from himself, but in fact the situation is a little different. While this issue is pending, there is no final decision. At the level of decrees, the Zelensky did not abolish the Commissioner institute,” Jemilev unequivocally stated.
He recalled that in May, after the election of a new president, the entire Poroshenko administration resigned. So did the Commissioner for the Rights of the Crimean Tatar People.
Here is how Jemilev himself recalls the development of events after his resignation:
“I got a call from Zelensky’s headquarters and asked, “Would you like to continue working as a Commissioner?” I said that this position needs to be maintained, but I do not have to hold it. I was joking then - I said that dinosaurs and mammoths should not be there, let's appoint someone young. We will recommend somebody. And so it ended there. And later I was told about a conversation from the Administration that this post was created for Mustafa Jemilev, and since Mustafa does not want to, we will liquidate it. And two months ago my staff was told that everything is closing and they should look for a job.”
However, in August, the leaders of the Crimean Tatars met with President Zelensky and there they again spoke about the institution of the Commissioner. According to Jemilev, the president said that he was not aware that this institution was liquidated.
“On August 9, when we met with the president in Kyiv, I told him: “You shouldn't have liquidated the institution of the representative of the Crimean Tatar people under the president. It is necessary that there should be a direct connection between the head of state and the indigenous people. And he says: “I haven't heard that it has been eliminated,” Jemilev recalls.
During the meeting, the leader of the Crimean Tatars recommended the president to appoint Refat Chubarov, the head of the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar people, as the Commissioner. The president promised to give an answer after discussions. However, after more than two months, the Crimean Tatars did not receive any answer either from the Office of the President of Ukraine or from Zelensky himself.
Such a delay in the decision and the lack of the position of the Commissioner for the Rights of Crimean Tatars in the decree, which approved the structure of the Office of the President of Ukraine in June, leads to certain forecasts.
“The fact that there is no Commissioner for the Crimean Tatar people in the structure of the President’s Office, also indicates the intention to eliminate it. But not necessarily this position should be on this list. He can introduce it again - this is the president’s authority,” Dzhemilev says.
To date, according to Jemilev, the institution of the Commissioner for Crimean Tatars under the President does not function and when things get off the ground is not known: no one announced the timing of decisions on the appointment of the Commissioner.
We are waiting for steps from the president. The previous stuff of the Commissioner is already looking for a job. If it is restored - it is restored, if no, then no.
At the same time, Jemilev hopes that the president will appreciate the importance of the existence of the Commissioner for Crimea Indigenous People. At least, commenting on the violent reaction of the Russian media to not entirely reliable information about the liquidation of the institution of the Commissioner for Crimean Tatars, he said: “Well, they will again be disappointed. Russians are always prematurely happy. They drank champagne in connection with the election of Trump, and now they say that he is “No. 1 enemy”.
The fifth president of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko introduced the post of the Commissioner for Crimean Tatar People in August 2014. Then, the first to this post, he appointed People's Deputy Mustafa Jemilev.
According to the presidential decree, the post of Commissioner is introduced to “ensure conditions for the realization of the civil, economic, social and cultural rights of the Crimean Tatar people as the indigenous people of Ukraine, preservation and development of their ethnic, cultural, linguistic and religious identity as part of Ukraine”.