Bi-Weekly Digest 16

Latest News

  • December 16: Through the mediation of Qatar, three more children were returned to Ukraine. Two children from the temporarily occupied territories of Ukraine and one boy who was deported to Russia
  • December 13: Moscow-installed illegal occupation authorities in Kherson Oblast’s Nova Kakhovka announced they would conduct a so-called voluntary evacuation of residents. In such a way, they announced forcible deportation of citizens.
  • December 10: Radio Svoboda released a documentary film delving into the history of the deportation of Crimean Tatars, titled “Silent Deportation.”
  • December 7: The Kyiv Independent’s investigative documentary “Uprooted” on Russia’s abduction of Ukrainian children has won the National Investigative Journalism Competition 2023.
  • December 7: A Russian soldier who kidnapped a 15-year-old Ukrainian boy near Chernihiv in March 2022 was sentenced to 12 years in prison by a court in Chernihiv Oblast.
  • December 7: The body of 15-year-old Aryna Yatsyuk was discovered in Belarus. She, along with her younger brother, had been forcibly deported by the Russians during the offensive in Kyiv in March 2022. Their parents lost their lives, and the younger brother was subsequently placed for adoption in Russia.
  • December 7: At the “Freedom or Fear” human rights conference, Ukrainian Ombudsman Dmytro Lubinets emphasized that the Russian side consistently generates “new lists of children who are slated for transfer to Russian territory” on a daily basis.
  • December 6: Kyiv, in collaboration with Qatar, repatriated eight deported children from the temporarily occupied territories of Ukraine and Russia. The return of the children was organized within the framework of the Bring Kids Back UA plan.


Advocacy advances

  1. The President of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelenskyy, participated in the first founding meeting of the International Coalition for the Return of Ukrainian Children, illegally deported and forcibly relocated to the Russian Federation from the temporarily occupied territories of our country. This is a high-level event, which was attended by 72 representatives of other countries and international organizations.
  2. According to the results of the first meeting of the International Coalition, the countries presented a joint Declaration on the return of illegally deported and forcibly displaced Ukrainian children to Ukraine, to which other states and international organizations can join.
  3. Ombudsman Lubinets spoke at PACE hearings in Paris about the prosecution of people involved in deportation of Ukrainian minors. He believes that PACE could also play a role in facilitating the repatriation of Ukrainian children.


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