Discussion program within the First Parliamentary Summit of the International Crimea Platform


Discussion program organized by the Office of the Crimea Platform and the Crimea Platform Expert Network 


When? 24 October 2022

Where?  National and University Library in Zagreb (ul. Hrvatske bratske zajednice 4)


The day before the plenary session of the First Parliamentary Summit of the International Crimea Platform, the Office of the Crimea Platform and the Crimea Platform Expert Network will organise an additional one-day offline programme of meaningful discussions aimed at highlighting various important topics concerning the occupied Crimean Peninsula. The topics include the prospects for holding Russia and Russian officials accountable for international crimes committed in Crimea; issues related to the future reintegration of Crimea following the deoccupation of the peninsula by Ukraine; the Croatian experience of reintegration of territories and whether it can inform Ukraine’s plans for the future. A conversation covering these complex topics will bring together Ukrainian officials and experts, as well as Croatian civil society and former governmental representatives with relevant experience. 


Panel discussions have been organised through the joint efforts of the Office of the Crimea Platform, established by a decree of the President of Ukraine on the basis of the Mission of the President of Ukraine in the Autonomous Republic of Crimea; experts and non-governmental organisations belonging to the Crimea Platform Expert Network — primarily ZMINA Human Rights Centre and Crimean Human Rights Group, as well as Croatian non-governmental human rights organisations. 


The working languages of the event are English and Ukrainian, with simultaneous translation from English to Croatian 


The event will be broadcast live on the website and social media.


Download PDF-file of the program with more information about the speakers

 Time by Zagreb (UTC+1:00)

08.30 Welcome coffee and registration
09.00 Welcoming video messages from the Chairman of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine Mr. Ruslan Stefanchuk and the Speaker of the Croatian Parliament Mr. Gordan Jandroković


Panel 1


09.05 – 10.10 Crimea and the Russia’s full-scale aggression against Ukraine: New human rights challenges

Since 24 February 2022, occupied Crimea has been used as a springboard for Russia’s full-scale invasion of the Ukrainian mainland. For the peninsula, this means even greater isolation and a new wave of repression, particularly forced mobilisation, which has been ongoing on the occupied peninsula since 21 September 2022, with Crimean Tatars at particular risk. The panel will also discuss the Russian Federation’s genocidal practices in Crimea, the implementation of a ‘Crimean scenario’ in other occupied territories of Ukraine, and Russia’s use of education as a tool for the destruction of Ukrainian identity and the militarisation of youth in the occupied territories of Ukraine.
Speakers: Tetiana Pechonchyk, Head of the Board of ZMINA Human Rights Centre, member of the Crimea Platform Expert Network

Valentyna Potapova, Head of the Almenda Centre for Civic Education, member of the Crimea Platform Expert Network

Kateryna Rashevska, lawyer for the Regional Centre for Human Rights, member of Crimea Platform Expert Network

Olha Skrypnyk, Head of the Crimean Human Rights Group, member of the Crimea Platform Expert Network
Moderator: Dave Elseroad, Head of the advocacy department of the Human Rights House Foundation
Closing remarks: Cvijeta Senta, Project Manager, Centre for Peace Studies (Human Rights House Zagreb)


10.10 – 10.30 Presentation of photo exhibition “Stories from the occupied Crimea”

The photo exhibition of Ukrainian reporters Alina Smutko, Taras Ibragimov, Aliona Savchuk, who covered human rights violations in occupied Crimea and documented lives of political prisoners’ families in 2014-2019. For their journalistic activities, the authors of the photographies were banned from entering the occupied Crimea and the Russian Federation from 10 to 35 years.
Introduction: Tetiana Pechonchyk, Head of the Board of the ZMINA Human Rights Centre, member of the Crimea Platform Expert Network

Alina Smutko, Ukrainian documentary photographer, photojournalist, and visual storyteller


Panel 2


10.30 – 11.40 Crimea and the “great war”: How to ensure the accountability of the Russian Federation for international crimes

In line with common colonial practice, Crimea has been used as a springboard for Russia’s invasion, as a base for the occupation of Kherson Oblast, as a ‘grey zone’ for the illegal transfer of Ukrainian citizens, and as a hub for the transportation of Ukrainian grain stolen from Kherson Oblast. In addition, dozens of Crimean residents are being persecuted by the occupying authorities for various manifestations of solidarity with mainland Ukraine. Impunity for the crimes committed during the occupation and the lack of a suitable international response over eight years has led to a fresh round of Russian aggression and the multiplication of crimes, in particular in Mariupol, Severodonetsk, Bucha, Irpin, Kherson, and Kharkiv. The Russian Federation’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine in February 2022 proved that bringing the country and its top officials to justice for international crimes is a necessary condition for protecting Europe and the world from the rule of violence. In addition to informing, the panel is aimed at consolidating international efforts to create effective mechanisms of accountability, including a Special Tribunal on Russian Aggression against Ukraine. Experts emphasise the special role of parliaments in this process. One suggestion for the summit would be to support the establishment of a Special Tribunal at the level of the national parliaments of the Crimea Platform’s participating states.
Speakers: Dr Kateryna Busol, Ukrainian lawyer and a Senior Lecturer at the National University of Kyiv-Mohyla Academy, Ukraine

Anton Korynevych, Ambassador-at-Large of the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Ukraine (online)

Dmytro Koval, lecturer at the National University of Kyiv Mohyla Academy, Legal Director of NGO Truth Hounds, member of the Crimea Platform Expert Network

Vesna Škare-Ožbolt, Commissioner of the President of the Republic of Croatia for the Peaceful Reintegration of the Danube Region (1995–1997), Minister of Justice of Croatia (2003–2006)

Ihor Zhovkva, Deputy Head of the Office of the President of Ukraine
Moderator: Oksana Pokalchuk, human rights lawyer


Coffee-break 


12.00 – 12.20 Invited speaker:

Ivan Zvonimir Čičak, President of the Croatian Helsinki Committee for Human Rights
Introduction: Vasyl Kyrylych, Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary Ambassador of Ukraine to the Republic of Croatia (TBC)


Panel 3


12.20 – 14.00

The reintegration of occupied territories and guarantees of non-repetition


The reintegration of Crimea following its deoccupation touches upon a wide range of issues and questions that require urgent answers, among them: constructing a regional security architecture that preclude the possibility of renewed aggression; overcoming the consequences of the militarisation of the population; the Russian Federation’s ongoing policy of destroying Ukrainian identity; the issue of citizenship and changes in demographic composition; ownership issues, particularly related to real estate and land; the complex effects of the occupation on the Crimean Tatar people; destruction caused to the environment and cultural heritage; the issue of responsibility for collaboration; and revising Russia’s imperialist humanitarian policy. During the discussion, representatives of the Ukrainian state and the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar People will present their vision of the processes described. Meanwhile, the participation of a former Croatian official will integrate an external perspective and take into account Croatia’s own experience of overcoming the consequences of war and the post-war reconstruction of the state.
Speakers: Refat Chubarov, Chairman of the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar People

Emine Dzhaparova, First Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs of Ukraine

Alina Frolova, Deputy Chairman of the Centre for Defence Strategies, member of the Crimea Platform Expert Network

Peter Woodard Galbraith, American diplomat, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the USA to Croatia (1993– 1998), co-mediator of the Erdut Agreement that ended the Croatian War of Independence

Yevheniya Kravchuk, Member of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine, Member of the Crimea Platform Inter-factional Association

Tamila Tasheva, Permanent Representative of the President of Ukraine in the Autonomous Republic of Crimea, Head of the Office of the Crimea Platform
Moderator: Nataliya Gumenyuk, Ukrainian journalist, author of a book of reports from Crimea titled ‘The Lost Island’


Mini-lunch 


Special event

Screening of a documentary dedicated to the political prisoner Nariman Dzhelyal and a public talk on combating of Russian propaganda narratives on Crimea 


14.30 – 14.45
Welcome speeches:

Olena Kondratiuk, Deputy Chairwoman of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine

Anna Tsyhyma, film director

Kateryna Yesypenko, wife of political prisoner Vladyslav Yesypenko, journalist of the Radio Free Europe / Radio Liberty’s Krym.Realii project
14.45 – 15.30 Screening of the film “The Voice Of Crimea. Nariman Dzhelyal” (running time of 45 minutes, English subtitles)

About the film: The documentary is dedicated to the story of Nariman Dzhelyal, a Crimean Tatar public figure and politician and deputy chairman of the Mejlis of the Crimean Tatar People, who was detained at the beginning of Autumn 2021 after his open participation in the inaugural Summit of the Crimea Platform in Kyiv and the opening ceremony of the Office of the Crimea Platform. The trial of Nariman and the Akhtemov brothers is currently ongoing. His wife and four children await him at home. The documentary, based on interviews with relatives, friends, associates, and defenders of Nariman, describes his story and, through this lens, speaks of political persecutions in occupied Crimea. Currently, victims of such oppression are mostly representatives of the Crimean Tatar people.


15.35 – 16.45 “Crimea has always been… What? How to overcome myths about the peninsula?”

The discussion is aimed at raising the complex topic of myths about Crimea which remain common in Western societies and influence not only discussions, but also the policymaking process with regards to Crimea and Ukraine as a whole, as well as attitudes towards Russia’s past and ongoing aggression against Ukraine and visions of how war can and should end. How are we to deal with deep-rooted myths about Crimea, especially if they are based on decades of first imperial and then Soviet disinformation and propaganda?
Speakers: Alim Aliev, Deputy Director of the Ukrainian Institute, friend of Nariman Dzhelyal

Tomica Bajsić, President of Croatian PEN Center

Dr Rory Finnin, Associate Professor of Ukrainian Studies at the University of Cambridge

Paul Grod, President of the Ukrainian World Congress

Mariia Mezentseva, Member of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine, Member of the Crimea Platform Inter-factional Association, Chairperson of national delegation at the PACE
Moderator: Maria Tomak, Head of the Crimea Platform Department of the Mission of the President of Ukraine in the Autonomous Republic of Crimea
Closing remarks:  Ambassador William B. Taylor, Institute of Peace (U.S.), Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the U.S. to Ukraine (2006-2009), Chargé d’affaires at the U.S. embassy in Kyiv (2019-2020), online



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