Holding the keys: humanitarian access and local organisations.

This report explores whether local actors in Ukraine and Syria obtain access, and if they do, how they negotiate such access to conduct relief and protection operations. It also reflects more broadly on how local knowledge on access can be better harnessed to serve those in need.




Ukraine: Will the Centre Hold?

Report Nº 247 / Europe & Central Asia. Far from the deadly battle against Kremlin-backed separatists in its eastern provinces, Kyiv faces a groundswell of resentment and disenfranchisement among citizens in the country’s west. To restore faith in the state’s laws and institutions, the government must address endemic corruption to win back those in the state’s margins.


Right to pension in the context of armed conflict

In 2014, the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine issued a decree restricting the right to pensions and social benefits of citizens of Ukraine residing in the government designated “area of anti-terrorist operations” in eastern Ukraine. At the end of 2016, around 400,000 people in eastern Ukraine did not have access to their pensions.



Protecting citizens despite conflict

In November 2014, the Government of Ukraine took a decision to stop payment of pensions and social payments to the citizens remaining in non-government controlled areas. The Government of Ukraine should provide all citizens, irrespective of their location in the country, with access to their earned entitlements.



New reports on racism and discrimination in Ukraine, Montenegro and Slovenia

The Council of Europe’s anti-discrimination commission, European Commission against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI) has published today new reports on Ukraine, Montenegro, as well as conclusions on Slovenia. In Ukraine, the ECRI commended new legal provisions to combat discrimination, progress in investigating hate crimes, steps towards integrating Roma and solidarity towards internally displaced persons (IDPs). However, racist violence against LGBT and Roma and hate speech dominating public discourse remain a problem and the conditions of IDPs must be improved. Over the past three years, the report says, political discourse has been dominated by anti-Russia rhetoric; the ongoing conflict in Ukraine has had a negative effect on vulnerable groups, in general. The report (2011-23.03.2017) does not take into account the situation in the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol, as well as certain areas of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions. In Montenegro, the ECRI praised the authorities’ efforts to strengthen protection against hate crimes, empower the Ombudsman and improve the situation of Roma. However, LGBT persons are still targets of violence, Roma remain at risk of social exclusion and segregation, and no reliable data on hate crimes exists. As for Slovenia, the authorities satisfactorily implemented two ECRI’s priority recommendations on setting up a body to combat discrimination, as well as on a compensation scheme for the “erased” persons and the regulation of their legal status. Nevertheless, Slovenia didn’t implement the recommendation on ensuring access to water for all Roma.




Council of Europe anti-torture Committee publishes Ukrainian response to the report on the November 2016 visit.

(27/07/2017). The Council of Europe’s Committee for the Prevention of Torture and Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (CPT) published today the response of the Ukrainian authorities to the report on the Committee’s November 2016 ad hoc visit, in which the CPT had made recommendations on police ill-treatment, ongoing prison reform and conditions of detention of remand and sentenced prisoners, including lifers.

The response has been made public under an automatic publication procedure introduced by the Ukrainian authorities in 2014. According to this procedure, all documents related to CPT visits shall be published automatically, unless the Ukrainian authorities submit within one month a request to postpone (for a period of up to six months) the publication of the document concerned.


Ukraine: anti-torture committee concerned about police ill-treatment and poor conditions of detention of remand and life-sentenced prisoners.

In the report on its November 2016 visit to Ukraine, published today, the Council of Europe’s Committee for the Prevention of Torture and Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (CPT) expresses serious concern about the frequency of allegations of ill-treatment by police officers (such as slaps, punches, kicks or blows with a truncheon or a plastic bottle filled with water). In most cases, the ill-treatment was allegedly inflicted by operational police officers attempting to obtain confessions or other information. In a number of cases, the CPT’s delegation also gathered medical evidence consistent with the allegations made. The CPT calls upon the Ukrainian authorities to pursue a policy of “zero tolerance” of police ill-treatment.


https://rm.coe.int/pdf/1680727931 (resumen ejecutivo)


Report on the human rights situation in Ukraine (16 February to 15 May 2017)

Parties to the armed conflict in eastern Ukraine have repeatedly failed to implement ceasefire agreements, allowing hostilities to escalate and claim more lives as the conflict moved into its fourth year, a UN report published today says.


Hidden burdens of conflict. Issues of mental health and access to services among internally displaced persons in Ukraine

Reliable epidemiological data on the burden of mental disorders, key risk factors and access to health services is crucial in helping to design appropriate trauma-informed mental health and psychosocial support responses for the at least 1.6 million internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Ukraine. The aim of this study was to collect scientifically rigorous evidence on the mental health and psychosocial support needs of IDPs in Ukraine in order to help inform relevant policies and programmes. This study found a prevalence of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) of 32% (22% men, 36% women), while the prevalence of depression was 22% (16% men, 25% women) and the prevalence of anxiety was 17% (13% men, 20% women). This study recommends that IDPs be considered as one of the target groups for mental healthcare provision by the relevant agencies in Ukraine. The findings support the need for a scaled-up, comprehensive and traumainformed approach to the provision of mental healthcare for IDPs in the country.