38 out of 57 member states Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE)supported the creation of an ad hoc group of experts to study cases of human rights violations in Russia, reported the French Foreign Ministry Thursday, July 28th.
The decision was made “in connection with the alarming human rights situation in Russia, marked by the introduction of numerous restrictive and repressive measures in recent years,” the agency said.
To investigate possible cases of violations, the OSCE will use the so-called “Moscow Mechanism” – according to this method, the organization will select a group of 45 independent experts who “assess the state of Russia’s implementation of its obligations and identify the actions of the Russian government that have led to the current situation with human rights and fundamental freedoms.” At the same time, the group should not include experts from both the country in respect of which the proceedings are being conducted, and from the countries that initiated the process.
According to US State Department spokesman Ned Price, the creation of the group was a response to the actions of the Russian authorities against freedom of expression and peaceful assembly, as well as reports of torture of people detained in the country. The group’s report will be published in September.
Russia opposes special missions
This is the third time that the “Moscow Mechanism” has been used in the OSCE since the beginning Russia’s wars against Ukraine – The previous two groups were assembled to evaluate reports of violations of international humanitarian law in connection with the hostilities unleashed by Russia and reports of war crimes committed by Russian troops in Ukraine. The Russian Mission to the OSCE called reports on these topics “unfounded propaganda”, and the delegation from Russia was not present at the last meetings of the organization, as its members appeared on the sanctions lists due to support for the war.
At the same time, the authorities of the self-proclaimed “DPR” and “LPR” interfered with the work of OSCE experts – in April, several members of the mission detained in the occupied territory, referring to the fact that their mandate expired, which Russia had previously refused to renew. In addition, one of the members of the observation mission was the victim of a rocket attack Kharkov, which was produced by the Russian army. At the same time, the OSCE rapporteurs noted that the norms of humanitarian law in Ukraine violated both Russian and Ukrainian troops.