Minister of Interior Arsen Avakov
Ministry of Internal Affairs
Аcademician Bogomolets St., 10
Kyiv, 01601, Ukraine
Prosecutor General Yuriy Lutsenko
3/15 Riznytska St.
Kyiv, 01011, Ukraine
Dear Minister Avakov and Mr. Lutsenko,
We are writing on behalf of Amnesty International, Front Line Defenders, Human Rights Watch and Freedom House to ask that Ukrainian authorities urgently take steps to strongly condemn and effectively address attacks and intimidation by radical groups that are promoting hatred and discrimination. While Ukrainian authorities have responded in a few instances to such attacks, the authorities have so far failed in recent months to respond to most incidents, which has created an atmosphere of near total impunity that cannot but embolden these groups to commit more attacks. It is no surprise that the number of violent attacks and threats by such groups is growing, as the inadequate response from the authorities sends a message that such acts are tolerated. We urge you to take effective action to prevent and stop acts that promote hatred and discrimination and hold those responsible to account.
Hiding under a veneer of patriotism and what they describe as “traditional values”, members of these groups have been vocal about their contempt for and intent to harm women’s rights activists, ethnic minorities, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and intersex (LGBTI) people, and others who hold views that differ from their own. These acts are restricting the peaceful exercise of their human rights and is further shrinking the space for civil society for groups that they believe…