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Press Conference in Severodonetsk - Human Rights in an undeclared war

Monday, 8th December 2014

Hotel Tsentralny
Prosp. Gvardejski 13, Conference room
Severodonetsk, Luhansk Oblast, Ukraine

Eastern Ukraine Human Rights, a new rights advocacy group founded in Donbas, Eastern Ukraine, is holding a press conference in Severodonetsk to discuss its strategy and areas of activity.

EUHR sees the protection of rights for work and working practice as one of the primary areas of its activity.

Badly thought-through government policies currently being proposed or pushed through in Kyiv carry a high risk of destabilising an already precarious situation for local communities in Donbas.

These include non-payment and delayed payment of mineworkers’ and other salaries, and plans to shut down mines and plants located on Ukrainian-held territory. Both policies are likely to result in criminal organisations assuming control as the region's main employers, leaving a severely impoverished local population no option but to cooperate. There is also an inherent risk of unemployed men joining separatist forces fighting against Ukraine.

During the press-conference, Pavel Lisyanskiy, founder of Eastern Ukraine Human Rights, will discuss some of the difficulties involved in protecting human rights during an armed conflict. He will also talk about recent violations of fundamental human rights in the area, and how to stand up to these violations by working together.

Particular attention will be focussed on access to information in regions adjoining the conflict zone. Fair access to news sources and professional, impartial reporting are vital and can help to save lives in these conditions.

The press conference will also see a presentation of photographs taken at mines in Donbas from a current project by artist Yevgenia Belorusets „Forgotten forms of resistance“. A large number of mines continue to operate despite being located in areas where damage and risk to life from bombardment and fighting occurs on a daily basis. This project is being carried out in partnership with the Independent Trade Union of Miners of Ukraine (NGPU) and with other rights advocacy groups in Donbas, with the goal of highlighting peaceful working practice in time of conflict in Ukraine.

We invite journalists, human rights activists working in Donbas, and anyone interested in the topic to attend the press conference.

Belorusets Zabytyje formy soprotivlenia2

Yevgenia Belorusets, from the series: Forgotten forms of resistance

Press conference participants will include:

Pavel Lisyanskiy, founder and member of Eastern Ukraine Rights Advocacy, rights and trade union activist, member of the NGPU

Vera Jastrebova, NGO Civil labor watch

Yevgenia Belorusets, artist, civil activist, member of the curatorial group Hudrada, co-founder of the literary journal Prostory

Denis Igorevich Shachbazyan, lawyer, member of Eastern Ukraine Human Rights

Ivan Aleksandrovich Pasikun, barrister and lawyer, member of Eastern Ukraine Human Rights


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