In a statement released on October 3 on the website of the Ukrainian Foreign Ministry, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine demands that Russia cancel conscription for military service in annexed Crimea.
"The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine expresses its strong protest over the intention of the Russian Federation to draft citizens for military service in the temporarily occupied territory of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and in the city of Sevastopol," Ukrainian diplomats declared.
The Ministry stressed that the UN General Assembly confirmed in a resolution from December 19, 2016 that Russia’s annexation of the Crimea and Sevastopol was illegal. It urges Russia to fulfill its obligations under international humanitarian law, international mechanisms for protecting human rights to which Russia is a party.
"We draw attention to the fact that, according to international humanitarian law, the occupying state is prohibited from coercing persons under protection to serve in its armed or auxiliary forces. It is also prohibited from exerting pressure and conducting propaganda in favor of voluntary enlistment into the army," the Ministry of Foreign Affairs stated.
The thematic report of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights published on September 25 documented the persecution of Crimean residents by Russian authorities for refusing to serve in the Russian army.
On October 2, the Russian Defense Ministry said that it plans to draft for military service two thousand Crimeans.
This is the fourth consecutive year after the annexation of the Crimea that Russian authorities have recruited Crimeans into the ranks of their army. Many public events on the peninsula are accompanied by massive propaganda of service in the Armed Forces of Russia. Crimeans in the streets are called to serve in the Russian army in defiance of international law and the decision of the UN General Assembly, which prohibits it.
Human rights activists insist that Russia's actions to recruit Crimeans violate section 51 of the Convention for the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War (Fourth Geneva Convention), and the transfer of drafted citizens of Ukraine from the occupied territory to the territory of the Russian Federation violates section 49 of this Convention.