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Home arrow newsitems arrow ECHR postponed Ukraine Hearing as Savchenko case impacts Election+Issue: + CoE's HR Director to "EF"

ECHR postponed Ukraine Hearing as Savchenko case impacts Election+Issue: + CoE's HR Director to "EF"

Written by ACM
Friday, 22 February 2019

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*Strasbourg/Angelo Marcopolo/- ECHR confirmed that it "Postponed" the 1st Grand Chamber's public Hearing of an Inter-State case on the Ukranian problem, initially scheduled on February 27, shortly after Nadejda Savchenko's affair's links to the Crucial forthcoming Presidential Election of March 31, as well as to the Political Issue itself, were highlighted by recent events, including relevant Statements to "Eurofora" both by ECHR's President, Guido Raimondi, and CoE's 1st PanEuropean Commissioner for Human Rights, Gil-Robles, added to CoE's Director General for Legal affairs and Human Rights, Christos Giakoumopoulos, (See Infra).


Savchenko notoriously was the World Famous Ukraine's Heroin, back on 2014-2016, when she spend 2 Years in a Russian Jail, accused to facilitate Air-clashes which killed 2 Journalists at the Donbass, before being exchanged with 2 Russian Prisoners from Kiev, hailed by President Poroshenko and elected as No 1 MP in former Prime Minister Julia Timoshenko's Party's list, selected as MEP to COE's Assembly in Strasbourg.

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Already since 2015, she had evoked (in Reply to Questions) the possibility to become Candidate for the 2019 Presidential Elections, and on 2016 she Started to Organise a New Political Party, which was Registered on 2017, as a "Political and Social Platform for Hope", naming her its representative to that Top Election. On the 26th of January 2019, this Party's Congress, with more than 100 Delegates from allover the Country, reportedly confirmed Savchenko unanimously as its Candidate for a New President of Ukraine.


But since Savchenko had started to held Direct Talks with the Heads of the pro-Autonomy Regions of Donetsk/Luhansk, engage in Prisoners' liberation through exchanges, and search for "Missing" Persons, reportedly evoked a possibility for Kiev to let Crimea's return to Russia in exchange of Donbass' regions, focused against "Corruption", for Reforms, and mainly "Peace", arguing that the original "Maidan" Square Popular Movement's Ideals had been "Betrayed", etc., then, she was Striped from her MEP Status inside her Party and at the CoE, falling in Disgrace among Kiev's main Establishment.


Then, on 2018, immediately after she denounced a Senior Ukranian Politician to have pushed those Deadly "Snipers" who Killed both Policemen and Demonstrators, back on February 2014 at Maidan Square, provoking thus a Violent and Bloody Confrontantion which Cancelled a Peace Agreement (for General Amnesty, a Government of National Unity, Elections in that Year, etc), Signed by All Sides, under the auspices of French, German and Polish Foreign Ministers, resulting, Instead, to the Division and the Political Problem of nowadays Ukraine, suddenly, Kiev's Prosecutor accused her for ... "Terrorism", including an alleged Plan to Overthrow by Force the Governent, Bomb the Parliament, Kill President Poroshenko (etc), Arrested and Imprisoned her in Jail, where she is being Held for a Year (2018 - 2019) until now, facing prosecution which threatens from 5 Years up to Life imprisonment.

 

(See also: http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/coeandrussiain2019.html, etc).


The notorious incident of those strange, Deadly "Snipers" at Maidan square, (Comp. Supra), is also cited in a CoE's Report, prepared after enquiry by a High Level Panel headed by former ECHR President Sir Nicolas Bratza (UK), who Denounced the Lack of efficient Investigations by Kiev's Authorities on 2015.


=> So that, on 24 January 2019, the current ECHR's President, Guido Raimondi (from Italy), Replying to a relevent Question by "Eurofora", in his Annual Press Conference, ensured that, if an Application (on Savchenko's case) arrived to Strasbourg in that Context, then, the PanEuropean Court would certainly examine it very Seriously, (See : http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/echrcavchenko.html).

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- But on 7 February 2019, Kiev's Authorities Refused to register Savchenko as Candidate to the Presidential Election of March 2019, (where, on the contrary, about 50 Other Candidates were accepted), reportedly finding Pretext in the Fact that her current imprisonment Hindered her to deliver the required sum of Money for Registration on time, and stigmatized her, as so-called suspect for "Terrorism". 

(Previously, towards the End of 2018, the Jailed Woman had vainly declared another "Hunger Strike" in Prison, demanding from Kiev's Authorities to let her Access her personal Bank Account precisely in order to Pay the required Money for her Registration as Candidate to that crucial Election).


+ Shortly after that, on 15 February 2019, an Ukranian Court extended even further her ImPrisonment, for +2 Months more, until the 15 of April, (i.e. after the Elections).


=> Reacting, Nadeza Savchenko declared that "Time has come for Sanctions", "long overdue" particularly from "the ECHR", on those "Authorities of Ukraine" which are responsible for all that, Denouncing also the fact that the out-going President in Kiev, Pedro Poroshenko, "did Not make the Judicial Reforms that he had Promised", and accusing him to have "Lied".


++ In Addition, Later-on this same Month, for a Public Meeting at Kiev during the Week-End of 16 to 17 February 2019, Savchenko, (in a Message with a photo, brought by her younger Sister), stressed that "Citizens of Ukraine... have a Right to a Decent Life, Security and Justice", and launched a Wider Call for "a New Maidan" !


Already, the Initial information about those muysterious Deadly "Snipers", who curiously Targetted Both Policemen and Demonstrators, back on that Crucial Night of 22 February 2014, (provoking Violent Clashes, the Cancellation of a Peace Agreement, and the Division of Ukraine which has made much more than 10.000 Victims, including Many Civilian People), had been notoriously made (to former Foreign Minister of Estonia, Urmas Paet , currently MEP at EU Parliament, who said that to f. EU Commissioner for External affairs, Catherine Ashton, UK), by a Respected Lady, a Medical Doctor, working in one of the NGOs which were present at Maidan Square, (mainly on the basis of a striking Similarity of Victims' Wounds, Bullets' directions, etc) +Moreover, among various Other sources, even "New York Times" had observed, during those Crucial Kiev Events, (on 20 Feb. 2014), that "Snipers .... opened Fire, but it was Unclear which Side they were on", and that "Fighting Shatters Truce", (See: https://www.nytimes.com/2014/02/21/world/europe/ukraine.html).


- And Nowadays, as a Young PhD Researcher on "the role of NGOs in Conflict Resolution", studying precisely the case of "the Armed Conflict at Eastern Ukraine", (in cooperation between the French "Institute for Straregic Studies in the Military School", alias "IRSEM", and the "EHESS" : "Higher Education School  in Social Sciences"), told "Eurofora", during an Event organized by the Ministry of Defense, where "Eurofora" was invited Last Week in Paris, (See: ..., etc), indeed, even Today, many NGOs appear actively Engaged in trying to help find a Peaceful Solution to the Ukranian Problem asap.


=> Thus, such a kind of Original and Independent-minded, partly Civil Society - partly Populist approach, at Grassroots level, to boost Dialogue between all Sides, help settle the most Urgent Human Rights' Issues, while also aiming to actively contribute to Peace-building, as also Nadejda Savchenko seems to pursue, (at the Risk of her own Freedom, Career, Health and perhaps even Life), might be an Interesting and useful Voice to add in the Public Debate around the forthcoming Presidential Elections in Ukraine, which seem to be of Crucial lmportance for Key Political Developments in the foreseable Future.

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- So that it wasn't a surprise when CoE's Experienced 1st PanEuropean Commissioner for Human Rights (1999-2006), Professor in Law, Alvaro Gil Robles from Spain, (brother of EU Parliament's former President, José María Gil-Robles y Gil-Delgado), speaking to "Eurofora" earlier on 2019 at the COE in Strasbourg, made it crystal-clear that, as a matter of principle, the above-mentioned Case of Nadezda Savchenko "is really Important".


- Even more interesting, the very experienced and well informed on the Ukranian issue, CoE's Director General for Legal affairs and Human Rights, Christos Giakoumopoulos, who served also as CoE's Envoy to Ukraine, speaking recently to "Eurofora" in Strasbourg on the Savchenko affair, seen particularly from the above-mentioned point of view, Strongly observed that it seems to Raise also Important Human Rights Issues "Similar to those of the well-known ECHR Judgements in landmark cases of Julia Tymoshenko v. Ukraine (2013), Lutsenko v. Ukraine (2012), as well as Mammadov v. Azerbaijan (2014) !".

 

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- Indeed, in all these ECHR's Judgements, (alike Nadeja Savshenko's case: Comp. Suipra), the Victims were engaged in Opposition Politics, (former Prime Minister, former Minister, or co-Founder of a Party, respectively), well Known also for Criticizing the current Government on Topical Key Issues, and aimed to participate in a forthcoming Presidential Election, from which they had been Hindered or Refused, practically by the consequences of their Prosecution and Jailing. And, as ECHR noted, the Circumstances of their cases indicated that the Actual Purpose for which a State Authority had taken restrictive Measures against them, was, in fact, also "Other" from the Reasons for which they had been prescribed by law.

I.e., in order to "Punish" them for their Political Opposition, Criticism or perceived "Lack of Respect" to the Authorities, and/or to Silence them for attempting to Disseminate what they believed to be True information, which the Government was trying to Hide, etc.


F.ex., at Tymoshenko's case ECHR pointed also at a "Punishment" for alleged "Lack of Respect" to the Ukranian Cour ; in Lutsenko's case, ECHR pointed mainly at his attempts to Speak out to the "Medias" ; and in Mammadov's case, ECHR pointed, in particular, at a Publication in his Blog about alleged Causes for a Popular Unrest in a remote Village.


That is to say, something very Similar to the  "Hotter" Savchenko's Denonciations (made at a Press Conference) on who had pushed the Deadly Kiev's "Snipers", who Murdered, provoked a Violent Conflict, and Topled a Peace Agreement signed by all Sides under EU Auspices, triggering the present Ukranian Problem, which has already Killed more than 13.000 People, Divided Europe and even Hampered its Economic Growth, (as f.ex. OCDE's Head, Angel Guria, has observed to "Eurofora", See: ...).


=> That's why, ECHR's established Case-Law, taking also into account the supplementary Fact that the Victims had been Hindered to Participate in Key forthcoming Elections, Contrary to their Wish, (Comp. Supra), concluded, in all such cases, that the respondent State "had Violated the Article 18 (Legal Purpose) in conjunction with Article 5 (Personal Liberty)", of the European Convention of Human Rights, because Restrictive Measures (as Jailing, etc) had been taken for "Purposes Other than those for which they have been prescribed", underlined Giakoumopoulos in Reply to an "Eurofora"'s Question on the Savchenko case.


+ Moreover, in the present case, it would also be Natural for ECHR to seek to take into Account Savchenko's personal Testimony, as an alleged Witness of mainsteam Kiev Politicians' implication in the affair of those Deadly Kiev's "Snipers" at Maidan Square on February 20, 2014, which topled a Peace Agreement signed by all sides, and triggered the Ukranian Problem, (Comp. Supra), BEFORE EuroJudges procede to that initially scheduled Public Hearing of the 1st InterState case "Ukraine v. Russia", initially due for February 27. Probably, that might be one of the Reasons for which it was suddenly "Postponed" sine die, (Comp. Supra).

    ++ In Addition, it has just been announced officially that UNO's World Council on Human Rights, at nearby Geneva, is due to Examine also the situation in Ukraine, during its Annual Session of 25 February  - 22 March 2019, including with an Interactive Debate on 20 of March...

 

 

(../..)

 

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Swedish Foreign Minister, Carl Bildt, speaking  to "EuroFora", denied rumors on Turkey's attempts to avoid an EU check of its obligations on Cyprus on December 2009 by blackmailing Nicosia to either accept any deal with intransigeant Turkish claims contrary to EU values on the island's political issue, or face threats against the territorial integriy of the EU island, semi-occupied by Ankara's army.

On the contrary, the incoming EU President-in-office, speaking exclusively to "EuroFora", promissed that he will act for EU Council's decisions on December 2009 assessment of Turkey's commitments on Cyprus to be kept.


    Bildt was asked to react to Cyprus' President Christofias' denunciation, earlier this week, that some want to exert "pressure" on Cyprus in order for Turkey to escape from its obligations.

    Avoiding to mention any precise Deadline, Bildt, however, warned about "Consequences" in case of "failure" to reunite Cyprus, but without saying whose responsibility an eventual deadlock might be.  

 Asked by "EuroFora" if there is a risk for "Turkey's commitments to "be forgotten or downgraded", "despite crystal-clear EU Council decisions and EU Parliament's latest Resolution on the assessment to make at the end of this year on Turkey's obligations", according to rumours that, instead of pressing Turkey, on the contrary, there might be "pressure on Cyprus", even "blackmail", as Media reported and President Christofias denounced this week, Bildt denied :

- "No ! ", he clearly replied.


- On the contrary, invited by "EuroFora", to "reassure that the Swedish EU Presidency (7-12/2009) will keep a fair stance, based on principles",  Bildt promised that "we (Swedish EU Presidency) will be very clear on all of the decisions taken by the (EU) Council".

He added, however, that "we have very numerous decisions that have been taken" by EU Council, as if he warned, also, on something else.

- "'I am not aware of any sort of statements coming out today''", Bildt started to say, on our reference to Cyprus' President Christofias" denunciation of Turkish lobby's manoeuvers this week, replying earlier to 'another"EuroFora"'s question during a Press Conference at EU Parliament in Strasbourg.


 - '"I know the issues that you' are concerned with'", he added, remembering  the statements he gave us when Sweden was chairing the PanEuropean CoE on 2008.

- "But, obviously, .. I think that Cyprus' Peace negotiations are extremenly important".

- And "'I think that we are at a unique moment in History, in the sens that both (Cyprus') President Christofias and Mr. Talat (the Turkish Cypriot leader), are personally convinced of the need to overcome the division".

 - "It's 20 Years since the fall of Berlin Wal, but we still have a Capital in Europe (Nicosia) that's divided". ,

- 'I don't that we should loose any time in overcoming that"..

 - ''We should be aware of the fact that success will bring great benefits, but failure, will also have major consequences. There will not be Status Quo' " It's a question of seeking a solution, or entering another situation, which is somewhat difficult to see exactly how that could evolve", he warned.

- "That being said, this is a negotiation for Cyprus itself", Bildt admitted.

 - ''We (EU) can support, the (EU) Commission primarily, be technically helpful, and then, of course, there is a specific role for the UN, when it comes to the Cyprus' situation".  

- "At least so far. It might not be for ever'. Certainly not for ever, but for this period of time", Bildt added, skiping now any reference to concrete threats on UNO's Peace keeping force in face of more than 40.000 Ankara's soldiers, contrary to some Press claims, (See previous NewsReports).


     Replying to another "EuroFora"'s Question,  if anyone might attempt to "impose a Deadline for the conclusion" of Cyprus' Talks on December 2009, Bildt avoided to speak of any precise Time-frame, and indirectly evoked the fact that  35 Years of Turkish Invasion/Occupation obviously durated too long :

'- "If I was from Cyprus, I would say that the Deadline was Yesterday ! '",
Bildt concluded.

Cyprus' Government Spokesman, Stephanou, reportedly pointed out that "a settlement is possible on December if Turkey changes its stance", accepting a solution for the reunification of the island based on UNO resolutiona and EU principles.

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Earlier, EU Chair, Swedish Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeld, highlighted an "historic opportunity" to "re-Unite" Cyprus according to EU's "basic Values"' (i.e. Human Rights) and 'Rules'", in a last-minute change of his draft speech to EU Parliament in Strasbourg.

    The initial Draft spoke only about "healing" the island.

    Significantly, Reinfeldt linked Cyprus' reunification with Turkey's obligations to respect EU's "Values" and "follow" EU's "common Rules" :

    - What is "called Membership Negotiations" should lead, "at- the end of the day", into "sharing a set of common Basic Values (i.e. Human Rights, Democracy, etc), and following common Rules", stressed Reinfeld from the outset.
    
    - "This is something that those on the Outside (of the EU), are now  contemplating", up "to Ankara", for "a solution" on "Cyprus", observed the EU Chairman, immediately afterwards..  

    - "Both sides of Cyprus have been granted a historic opportunity to together reach an agreement on a solution to re-Unite the island, that has been divided for far too long", said Reinfeldt, modifying his draft text.


-  "The Swedish Presidency will act ...in accordance with Commitments EU has made, on the basis of Criteria that apply", "as a Honest Broker", he promised.    

- "To those on the inside (of the EU), allowing the membership process to become an opportunity to solve protracted disputes, can be tempting", he added.


    "In such cases, we must find solutions that can benefit both sides, and open up a way forward. Otherwise, it would jeopardize the progress we have made towards EU integration", Reinfeldt said.

***

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