Strasbourg, 20 March 2014 –
In a decision adopted today, the Council of Europe Ministers' Deputies condemned the referendum conducted on 16 March by the Crimean local authorities, in violation of Ukrainian legislation. They reiterated their solidarity with Ukraine and its people and underlined that the current crisis in Ukraine must be resolved peacefully, based on strict adherence to international law.
Deploring the decisions of the Russian Federation to admit Crimea and Sevastopol into the Russian Federation, the Ministers' Deputies firmly recalled the duty of all member States to comply with the commitments undertaken under the Statute of the Council of Europe.
The Ministers' Deputies will resume consideration of the situation in Ukraine at their next meeting on 2 April.There they will hear inter alia the Secretary General’s report on the mission in Ukraine in which the Advisory Committee of the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities is currently engaged following their decision of 14 March last.
1195th meeting – 19 and 20 March 2014
Recalling their previous decisions, and in particular those adopted at their 1192bis (26 February 2014) and 1194th (12-14 March 2014) meetings,
1. reiterated their solidarity with Ukraine and its people and underlined that the current crisis in Ukraine must be resolved peacefully, based on the territorial integrity, sovereignty and independence of Ukraine, as well as on strict adherence to international law;
2. condemned the fact that the referendum conducted by the local authorities of the autonomous Republic of Crimea in violation of the Ukrainian legislation took place on 16 March 2014;
3. deplored the subsequent decision of the President of the Russian Federation to sign treaties on the admission of the autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol into the Russian Federation, as well as his appeal to the Parliament of the Russian Federation to adopt a law to complete this process;
4. firmly recalled the duty of all member States to comply with the commitments undertaken under the Statute of the Council of Europe and relevant instruments of the Organisation;
5. stressed in this context the importance of the interim measure granted by the European Court of Human Rights following the Inter-State application lodged by Ukraine and called on the two Parties concerned to comply with this measure without delay;
6. urged the Russian Federation to enter into direct dialogue with the Government of Ukraine and called on both sides to use all relevant international mechanisms to find a peaceful and negotiated solution to the current crisis, and to refrain from any steps which may increase tensions and lead to further violence;
7. supported the Secretary General’s initiatives to assist the Ukrainian authorities in their efforts to consolidate democratic institutions, to protect human rights, including the rights of persons belonging to national minorities, and to promote the rule of law;
8. agreed to resume consideration of this item at their next meeting.