UK calls on Russia to end unlawful control of Crimea on sixth anniversary of annexation

18 Mar 2020 03:24 PM

Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab reiterates the UK's unwavering support for Ukraine’s independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity.

On the sixth anniversary of Russia’s illegal annexation of Crimea, the Foreign Secretary has reiterated the UK’s condemnation of Russia’s actions and has again called for Russia to release all Ukrainian political prisoners, withdraw its military forces and end its unlawful control of the peninsula. The UK is also developing its own sanctions policy, having worked closely with partners on EU sanctions against Russia for the past six years, ensuring it will continue to play a leading role in international sanctions now that it has left the EU.

Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab yesterday said:

The UK will never recognise Russia’s illegal annexation of Crimea. We stand with the international community in our unwavering support for Ukraine’s independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity.

We will continue to be a force for good in the world by supporting human rights defenders and monitors to expose Russia’s regime of human rights violations in Crimea.

The human rights situation in Crimea has deteriorated in the last six years. Muslim Crimean Tatars and followers of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine are persecuted for their religious beliefs. And those who reject Russia’s unlawful control of Crimea face harassment, arbitrary detention, torture and enforced disappearances, with about 90 political prisoners currently imprisoned on sham charges.

The UK is working to improve the human rights situation for civilians living in Crimea. We support human rights defenders and the Crimean Prosecutor’s Office to record abuses and seek justice for victims and we’ve spent £800,000 since 2018 to support the work of UN human rights monitors in Crimea and eastern Ukraine.

Further Information

Media enquiries

For journalists