20 April 201708:29

Foreign Ministry Press and Information Department comment following a ruling by the UN International Court of Justice


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On April 19, the UN International Court of Justice delivered an order on the request for the indication of provisional measures submitted by Ukraine in the case concerning Application of the International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism (ICSFT) and the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (ICERD).

The Court ruled, without taking a vote, that the claims made by Ukraine against Russia with regard to ICSFT are implausible and therefore there is no basis for indication of provisional measures.

The Court also called upon the parties to the dispute to work for the full implementation of the Minsk agreements, recognizing that these agreements were adopted and signed, in particular, by the representatives of Donetsk and Lugansk – a fact that Ukraine attempts to deny.

With regard to ICERD, the Court did not uphold any of the provisional measures requested by Ukraine. Kiev’s claims that Russia is allegedly carrying out a policy of “erasing the cultural identity of Ukrainian and Crimean Tatar communities” were not supported. The Court also considered ill-founded an entire range of Ukraine’s accusations, such as the existence of allegedly ethnically motivated disappearances, murders and detentions in Crimea, persecution of media and civil society organisations, bans on meetings and public events held by members of Ukrainian and Crimean Tatar communities, and the impossibility to receive education in Crimean Tatar language.

The Court indicated three interim measures regarding ICERD: one concerns availability of education in the Ukrainian language, another – the ability of the Crimean Tatar community to conserve its representative institutions, and the third, addressed to both Ukraine and Russia – to refrain from any action which might aggravate the dispute.

It is important that the Court took up a principled position and did not support Ukraine’s claims regarding the allegations of “aggression” or “occupation”, or the status of Crimea, as falling beyond the scope of the proceedings.

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