Dzhaparova: Russia "Seeking to Use OSCE Platform for Hybrid Warfare"
On 11 September 2018, the First Deputy Minister of Information Policy of Ukraine, Emine Dzhaparova, spoke at the Human Dimension Implementation Meeting (OSCE HDIM), an OSCE annual conference, held in Warsaw, Poland.
“This is almost the fifth year when Ukraine clangs a bell in attempt to warn the international community about threats to international security and democratic order. Threats that we physically encounter in Russia-occupied Crimea and Donbas. Millions of dollars have been spent to create a parallel reality and information bubble of the so called “democratic referendum in Crimea” and “historical justice of Russia reunion”, and “civil war in Donbas” against Ukrainian “fascism”. That is the same if you would be convinced of a “democratic referendum in Austria” during the Anschluss,” she noted.
Ms Dzhaparova recalled persecution of independent journalists and bloggers by the Russian authorities in occupied territories and the use of lapdog media for propaganda and disinformation. “Numerous international resolutions, the decision of the UN International Court of Justice does not make Russia follow international law and stop human rights violations in the occupied Ukrainian territories,” the First Deputy Minister was quoted as saying.
She also drew attention to the fact that Russian propagandists are even trying to take advantage of the OSCE HDIM platform for hybrid warfare. “When the [OSCE HDIM] platform is being misused by NGOs financed by runaway corrupt Ukrainian ex-ministers to further the pro-Kremlin narrative, we must call it hybrid warfare, where democratic tools are used against democracies, and freedom of speech is made into freedom of lie or selective truth,” she stressed.
On 10 September, the OSCE HDIM annual conference started in Warsaw, with nearly 1,500 government officials and public activists from OSCE member states and partner countries participating.
The conference is aimed to review commitments undertaken by the Governments of Member States in the field of observing fundamental rights and freedoms.
Below is the full text of the speech delivered by Ms Dzhaparova at the OSCE HDIM conference:
OSCE HDIM - 2018. Warsaw.
Ladies and Gentlemen!
This is almost the fifth year when Ukraine clangs a bell in attempt to warn the international community about threats to international security and democratic order. Threats that we physically encounter in Russia-occupied Crimea and Donbas. Millions of dollars have been spent to create a parallel reality and information bubble of the so called “democratic referendum in Crimea” and “historical justice of Russia reunion”, and “civil war in Donbas” against Ukrainian “fascism”. That is the same if you would be convinced of a “democratic referendum in Austria” during the Anschluss or imposed out-of-reality vision of people’s democracies in Eastern Europe during the Cold War behind the iron curtain.
An ongoing crime is being committed, where along with the seizure of 503 frequency acquisitions used by Ukrainian Media in Crimea and belong to Ukraine, Russia stole digital and analogue broadcasting equipment from Ukraine’s TV and radio stations, thus denying them opportunities to broadcast. Almost 100 Russian entities illegally use Ukrainian frequencies and equipment to broadcast Russian propaganda messages, legitimizing and normalizing the attempted annexation of Crimea, vilifying Ukraine, the west and democratic values.
According to the Institute of mass information, Ukraine-based NGO, over 1200 media outlets had to shut down in Crimea since 2014.
Russia also blocks access to Ukrainian web sites. Monitoring conducted by Crimean Human Rights Group in March 2018 revealed that access to 30 Ukrainian news and other web sites was blocked by different providers in Crimea. Same in Donbas.
Efforts of the Ukrainian government to restore Ukrainian broadcasting into occupied territories from 3 newly constructed towers are to a large extent thwarted by the Russian jamming. Russia makes sure no information other than the one provided by the media under its control reaches millions of Ukrainian citizens.
Ukrainian Journalists and ordinary Ukrainians who dare express views different from the official Russian position in the occupied territories are being jailed and persecuted.
Mykola Semena - A well know Crimean independent journalist claims that Crimea is a part of Ukraine. Sentenced and banned to write. His colleagues Andriy Klymenko and Anna Andiyevska would have faced the same fate had they not left the peninsula back in 2014 .
Stanislav Asieiev - a Ukrainian journalist jailed in Donbas for the publications in the Ukrainian media. He was called a spy and denied any access of international observers and advocates.
Roman Sushchenko, a journalist of the national Agency Ukrinform , jailed in Moscow and sentenced to 12 years for being found guilty by the Russian Court as a “Ukrainian spy”.
Nariman Memediminov, a civic journalist in Crimea. Jailed for “propagating terrorism” by social media posts back in 2014.
Ismail Ramazanov, was held in custody for more than five months for “propagating extremism” with Zello, an Internet radio outlet.
Hulsum Alieva, is accused of “inciting ethnic hatred with posts she published on an online page of Crimean Solidarity, an organisation that brings together relatives of Crimea’s political prisoners. Hulsum’s father is one of Crimea’s political prisoners and his arrest had prompted her to become a civic journalist.
Elina Mamedova, a Crimean Tatar woman, is under home arrest for «purportedly inciting hatred and enmity and humiliating human dignity» with three reposts from pro-Ukrainian groups in social media in Crimea.
A Crimean Tatar young poetess Alie Kenjalieva is being persecuted for “the rehabilitation of Nazism” for for the poems published in the CT newspaper "Kirim" on May 9, 2018.
And this is another side of the coin that all of you would have never a chance to find out if watch Russia Today, Sputnik or Russia -backed media outlets in occupied Crimea or Donbas.
Numerous international resolutions, the descision of the UN International Court of Justice does not make Russia follow international law and stop human rights violations in the occupied Ukrainian territories. Moreover, it orchestrates hybrid warfare right at the doorstep of this distinguished Platform.
Today’s side-event convened by the Permanent Mission of the RF to the OSCE in Vienna on the human rights and freedom in Crimea brings a number of the representatives of the state-controlled Crimean Tatar TV channel “Millet” in Warsaw. The “Millet” was launched in 2015 in occupied Crimea after the other CT TV channel ATR had been squeezed out together with over 10 Crimean independent media outlets. We don’t even need to attend the event to guess what exactly would be said. Occupied Crimea would be described as the prosperous region of the Russian Federation with happy people (especially Crimean Tatars) around and actively built up infrastructure: roads, highways, the Kerch bridge, schools and kindergartens, mosque and the airport. But this is about selective truth, when from another hand the channel is silent about the construction of the prisons, large-scale reconstruction of the military bases and accommodation for the Russian army and law enforcement massively deployed in occupied Crimea from the Russian mainland together with hundreds of thousands civilians that under international law is the war crime. It is weird when the only CT TV channel in Crimea , as Millet names itself, remains silent towards political persecutions, hundreds of CT house searches, unfair imprisonment and politically motivated criminal cases, destroy of cultural heritage under the guise of the reconstruction namely the Bakhchiray Khans palace and many more. The TV channel is unfortunately being actively used to distance Crimean Tatars from the political leadership - Mejlis of the CT people, that was banned by the Supreme Court of RF and named an extremist organization; is being used to make not loyal CT “extremists” and “terrorists”. Selective coverage, misinterpretation and weak standards turn Millet into the weapon of Russian propaganda in the CT language.
When the OSCE HDIM platform is being misused by NGOs financed by the runaway corrupted Ukrainian ex-ministers for the political purpose and Russia-backed narrative of “failed state” in Ukraine, we have to name it a hybrid warfare, where democratic tools are being used against democracies. When puppet controlled “journalists” turn the freedom of speech in the freedom of lie or selective truth; When NGOs established and financed by the people who involved my country into a greatest corruption index Ukraine has ever experienced, arrange round tables on the freedom of speech in Ukraine right here at this Forum, how should we react? When the army of fake social media users and bots cut the ground of reality and disseminate false truth around the globe, this is threat, not only for Ukraine.
Well, I guess, a lot to be done by all of us not to let to misuse credibility and principles of Human Dimension Implementation Meeting.
I thank you for your attention.
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