The present Special Issue of the Thematic Review «Crimea beyond Rules» is devoted to the issue of forcible expulsion of Ukrainian citizens, foreigners and stateless persons from the occupied territory of Crimea and is based on the data of the research.
Such forcible expulsion has been and continues to be carried out despite the will of the persons being expelled, on the grounds of judicial decisions of the occupying courts – the courts created by the occupying power in the temporarily occupied territory of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol.
The research was conducted to ensure the principle of the inevitability of punishment for gross violations of human rights and international humanitarian law. The research methodology is based on a systematic approach to studying the situation: monitoring, collection of information from open and closed sources, its verification and comprehensive analysis, identification of victims of human righ violations and IHL norms, recording evidence of such violations in accordance with the principles of relevance and
Information on violations was obtained directly from the victims of such forcible expulsions, their relatives, lawyers, as well as from public information sources of the Russian Federation official authorities, including the judiciary, documents of international organizations such as the UN and OSCE, the authorized bodies of Ukraine, including the Prosecutor’s Office of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea, as well as the media.
In total, 2,425 persons forcibly expelled by the decision of occupation courts were identified.
The formed files of victims and the rest of evidentiary base consist of:
•) interviews, written explanations, protocols of victim interviews (including audio and video recording of such interviews and interrogations);
•) occupation courts orders on administrative cases in which they made decisions on the imposition of penalties in the form of forcible expulsion;
•) copies of administrative cases materials;
•) documents of official authorities of the Russian Federation (The Ministry of Justice, The Ministry of Internal Affairs) on matters regarding the recognition of presence of foreign citizens on the territory of the Russian Federation as undesirable and their subsequent
•) reports of international organizations (in particular, the UN, OSCE);
•) information, obtained from other open sources and the media.
The methods that were used in the research process are specific, the ones taking into account a number of factors that directly influence the collection of information and verifying its reliability.
Based on the results of the study, its authors came to the conclusion that the problem of forcible expulsion of Ukrainian citizens, foreign citizens and stateless persons from the temporarily occupied territory of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol has a pronounced systemic character. It covers the entire territory of the occupied Crimean peninsula and all categories of persons protected under the terms of Article 4 of the Geneva Convention IV (Ukrainian citizens, foreign citizens and stateless persons).
Entire research of Special issue of the thematic review “Crimea beyond rules” is HERE