According to the data of the State Security Service, since the beginning of the armed conflict in eastern Ukraine, from the captivity of self-proclaimed DPR/LPR was released at least 3084 persons. More than 100 people are still in captivity. All these people faced psychological violence, and many of them – torture and ill-treatment, as repeatedly noted in human rights reports.
POWs are a special category since they often experience not only torture during interrogations, but abuse for reasons of revenge. Therefore, in these cases, the state should not be limited to documenting violations of humanitarian law that have taken place regarding captives. The state should take into account the need for rehabilitation and reintegration of those returning from captivity to civilian life.
That is why this pilot report the Ukrainian Helsinki Human Rights Union and the Kharkiv Human Rights Protection Group raise a problematic issue of Ukrainian society – what does the state make and have to make for those who were in captivity? Can these people rely on medical care and psychological rehabilitation?
The publication analyzed state obligations in terms of international law, national legislation on guarantees of medical and psychological care to captives, and the practice of medical care and psychological rehabilitation. A separate section presents the data and methodology used in work. The report concludes with some recommendation – conclusions.
The authors express their sincere gratitude to Kharkiv Human Rights Protection Group lawyer Gennadiy Tokarev, whose experience, efforts and diligence laid foundation for documenting war crimes and enabled the drafting of this report.
The report can be found here
This publication is made possible by the generous support of the American people through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) in the framework of the Human Rights in Action Program implemented by the Ukrainian Helsinki Human Rights Union.
Opinions, conclusions and recommendations presented in this publication do not necessarily reflect the views of the USAID or the United States Government. The contents are the responsibility of the authors and UHHRU.
The American people, through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), have provided economic and humanitarian assistance worldwide for 55 years. In Ukraine, USAID’s assistance focuses on three areas: Health and Social Transition, Economic Growth and Democracy and Governance. USAID has provided 1.8 bln technical and humanitarian assistance to Ukraine since 1992.
For additional information about USAID programs in Ukraine, please visit our website: http://ukraine.usaid.gov or Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/USAIDUkraine.