Target: President of Ukraine Oleksandr Turchynov
Goal: Stop the abduction and abuse of innocent Ukrainian citizens
As conflict continues to boil between Ukraine and Kiev innocent civilians are being abducted and beaten by anti-Kiev forces who call themselves authorities. These abductions need to stop and those who have been captured need to be released so they can be with their families and seek medical help.
Journalists, activists, and local officials have been snatched up by these self-proclaimed authorities. Some have been released with bruises and other injuries; others have not been seen since. In early May anti-Kiev forces abducted six men including three who were councilmembers in Novogradovka. They were released the next day but had been severely beaten and injured. Just days before Artem Popyk and Yaroslav Malanchuk, members of the local election commission, were abducted and they haven’t been seen since. It’s believed that anti-Kiev forces are holding at least two dozen people captive in eastern Ukraine.
Several individuals who have managed to escape or who have been released shared their experiences with journalists. The recently-abducted councilmembers describe armed and masked men storming into their homes and dragging them out in broad daylight just steps from a local police station. Their abductors took them to a building where they began beating and kicking them, accusing them of being pro-Kiev. They suffered heavy bruising, cracked ribs, and serious head injuries.
Even in the midst of incredibly challenging conflicts governments have a sworn duty to uphold human rights. These laws apply to all of Ukraine, including regions under the control of these self-proclaimed authorities. Urge the President of Ukraine to protect his citizens from similar abuses. No one has the right to make innocent citizens suffer this way.
Dear President Turchynov,
It has come to my attention that self-proclaimed security forces are abducting and abusing your citizens. Journalists, activists, and even local officers are being targeted by these armed forces. Despite calling themselves “authorities” they are acting more like a terrorist group. Their actions violate human rights and and must cease immediately.
No matter what stance the people of Ukraine or Kiev may take, no human being should be subjected to abduction and abuse. I urge you to protect all your citizens regardless of their political beliefs, and to end the harassment and abuse of innocent Ukrainians working for positive change.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Helgi via Wikimedia