Throughout the conflict in and around Ukraine, the OHCHR has brought to the Council the gravity of the situation on the ground. Norway remains concerned about the lack of accountability for human rights abuses on the whole territory of Ukraine. The High Commissioner’s continued work to monitor and report the human rights situation remains crucial.
We take note of the High Commissioner’s mention of a further deterioration of fundamental freedoms and a continued reign of impunity and fear in areas under control of the Russian backed rebels in Donbas. The added obstruction of humanitarian aid is testimony of a disregard for the civilian population. Norway reiterates its call on the authorities in effective control – both the Russian Federation and the rebel authorities – to allow full and unhindered access for humanitarian agencies and all UN organizations. It is necessary to fully implement the UN General Assembly resolutions on Ukraine and recommendations contained in the OHCHR Mission's reports.
No statement on this conflict should fail to mention the situation in Crimea, and the High Commissioner commendably continues to report on the human rights situation, despite the continued non-cooperative stance of the Russian Federation, which exercises de facto control over the area. We reiterate our call on the Russian Federation to grant the High Commissioner full and unhindered access to Crimea. Access to the peninsula for international human rights mechanisms is an important matter of principle and a necessity to improve the grave human rights situation, more than four years after Russia’s illegal annexation of the peninsula.