Ms. Valeriya Lutkovska: "Thanks to cooperation with the international organizations the level and quality of monitoring visits of NPM constantly increase"

26/06/2015 16:00

The Ukrainian Parliament Commissioner for Human Rights declared this thesis during presentation of the Special report of the Commissioner "Monitoring of places of detention in Ukraine: a state of realization of the national preventive mechanism" for 2014.

Acquainting participants with results of functioning of NPM for 2014, Ms. Valeriya Lutkovska noted that in Ukraine more than 1 million people are in 6000 places of detention. From them 3429 children aged till 3-4 years which get to children's homes, 243601 – persons with mental and narcological diseases who were in inpatient treatment, 21111 persons were in a pre-trial detention centers.

"Actually 2014 was superdifficult: both for all country in general, and for functioning of the national preventive mechanism. Representatives of NPM actually had to carry out functions of fast reaction, carrying out urgent verifications of information concerning human rights violations in establishments of different type during Revolution of dignity, to carry out continuous monitoring in the anti-terrorist operation zone. Places of the compelled stay of immigrants from a zone of carrying out anti-terrorist operation became new objects of monitoring", – Ms. Valeriya Lutkovska informed.

During presentation the chairman of the board of CO "Center of Information on Human Rights" Ms. Tetyana Pechonchik informed that in 2014 the NPM monitors started carrying out monitoring of places of detention in the anti-terrorist operation zone.

"Except inherent the analysis of NPM of ensuring the rights and freedoms of wards and pupils, the main attention was paid to an assessment of risks for life and health of these persons in connection with carrying out anti-terrorist operation in the territory of Donetsk and Lugansk regions. For this reason evacuation from out of limits of armed conflict of those who are under the care of the state in different places of detention, was called by representatives of NPM as one of the main tasks of the state. Because of non-fulfillment of recommendations concerning evacuation of significant quantity of persons who are in establishments of penitentiary system, education, health care, social protection of the population remained in temporarily occupied territory", – Ms. Tetyana Pechonchik emphasized.

"I consider the main advantages of NPM are constancy of monitoring, systemacity of its organization and flexibility which involves public activists. NPM organically combines advantages of the status of state institution and possibility of public sector", – the director of Program initiative "Human rights and justice" of the International Renaissance Foundation Mr. Roman Romanov is convinced.

Answering a question of journalists in what uniqueness of the Ukrainian NPM consists, Ms. Valeriya Lutkovska noted that in Ukraine NPM is in force from 2012 in the format "Ombudsman Plus", foreseeing carrying out of monitoring visits to places of detention by employees of Office of Ombudsman together with public activists.

"Actually such format isn't unique, however we created separate Department for realization of the national preventive mechanism where each division specializes in a certain direction – in the sphere of State penitentiary service, Ministry of Internal Affairs, the Ministry of Defense etc. In other words we could divide and narrowly specialize the experts who know the bases and conditions of detention of the person in each separate place of detention. Besides, there is a separate division consisting of experts of the medical sphere who surely participate in monitoring visits and verify complaints to injuries, non delivery of health care. Other feature of the Ukrainian format "Ombudsman Plus" – our public monitors are completely independent in actions and areas of work, so we don't interfere with their activity but we only support their initiatives. And the most important – thanks to cooperation with the international organizations we can constantly develop thanks to that the level and quality of our visits constantly increase", – Ms. Valeriya Lutkovska summarized.

Reference

The National Preventive Mechanism (NPM) is an independent national authority which is created and operates according to the Optional protocol to the UN Convention against tortures and foresees regular monitoring of all places of detention for the prevention in them of ill treatment of people who are there. In total during 2014 within NPM 152 visits are carried out. Already since the beginning of 2015 their quantity makes 75, including, 28 – in places of detention in the anti-terrorist operation zone.