Press Release regarding Russia's attempts to organize so-called election and other illegal actions in the temporarily occupied Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol
The Russian Federation is preparing for illegal elections of the "governor" of the temporarily occupied city of Sevastopol and additional "elections” of the deputy to the occupation legislative assembly of Sevastopol, which are planned to be held on September 10, 2017, within the framework of the Single Election Day in the Russian Federation.
The "Governor's Election Act", approved by the occupation administration of Sevastopol, provides for the possibility of participating of foreign observers in the election campaign, and the work plan of the Central Electoral Board of the Russian Federation contains clauses regarding the sending of invitations to the "partner electoral bodies" of foreign states and profile international organizations.
In view of the above, the Ukrainian Side would like to bring to the attention the following:
1. The "election" of the "governor of Sevastopol" is another flagrant violation by the Russian Federation of its obligations under international law, including UN Charter, United Nations General Assembly Resolutions "Territorial Integrity of Ukraine" A/Res/68/262 of March 27, 2014 and "Situation of human rights in the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol (Ukraine)" A/Re/71/205 of December 19, 2016, the provisions of the Geneva Convention on the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War.
2. Ukraine strongly condemns Russia's actions to organize so-called "election of the governor" of the occupied city of Sevastopol and regards them as a flagrant violation of Ukraine's sovereignty and territorial integrity. Any actions aimed at legitimizing an annexation of part of the sovereign territory of Ukraine will continue to be considered insignificant and that do not create any international legal consequences for changing the territorial status of part of the territory of Ukraine - the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol, except of Russia's responsibility for internationally wrongful acts.
3. Pseudo-election processes, both regional and federal levels, illegally organized by the Russian Federation in the temporarily occupied territories of Ukraine in 2014-2016, have not been recognized by either Ukraine or the international community.
4. The Ukrainian side adheres to the principle of inadmissibility of the participation of foreign observers/experts in monitoring/familiarizing with the course of illegal elections in the territory of the city of Sevastopol temporarily occupied by the Russian Federation on both the bilateral level and within the frameworks of international organizations.
Participation in any form, directly or indirectly, in observing the "elections” in the territory of the city of Sevastopol temporarily occupied by the Russian Federation will be regarded by Ukraine as an unfriendly step, and entry into this territory with that purpose in violation of the procedure established by the current Ukrainian legislation, will entail responsibility in accordance with the laws of Ukraine.
In this connection the Ukrainian Side requests the international community not to recognize the above said "election" and to refrain from contacts with the illegitimately elected "governor" of Sevastopol and other “representatives” of the occupation authorities, not to accredit them, including as members of the Russian delegation to international forums, including interparliamentary ones;
- not to send observers/experts of national status or as members of OSCE ODIHR and/or other international organizations missions of to observe/familiarize with the course of illegal elections in the territory of the city of Sevastopol temporarily occupied by the Russian Federation.