9 December 2015
For 15 months, experts of International charitable organization “Environment-People-Law” have been releasing information on environmental consequences of the war in eastern Ukraine. However, neither Ukraine nor other countries paid sufficient attention to serious human rights violations in eastern Ukraine caused by environmental factors.
Destruction of waste water treatment facilities in the region that even earlier had had very poor water quality indicators, massive pollution of soil and air with explosion by-products, accidents on hazardous industrial facilities as well as mine flooding – all this makes dangerous stay of people in the ATO zone.
Peaceful population and militaries are not warned about the fact that not only bullets are dangerous for their lives. Those who survived battles think that the danger is over but this is a premature conclusion. Concentrations of sulphur oxygen and nitrogen in the air during shelling exceeds the maximum permissible indices by 5-8 times. However, no information is disseminated about the need to protect respiratory organs in such conditions. Directly in the explosion craters and around them remnants of explosion products poison soil. Nevertheless, being not aware of the problem, local population continues growing food and thus poisoning themselves.
The issue about the need to give compensation for harm caused to health of ATO zone residents and militaries is not raised. Nobody speaks about the critical need to stop any agriculture works on big areas of land, including private lands. The fact that it is dangerous to stay in the area of military actions not only during shelling but also after it is kept in secret.
Such an attitude of the state to its citizens that leads to harm to their lives and health is an evidence of undeniable violation of human rights. EPL announces the beginning of the campaign for protection of environmental rights of ATO militaries and peaceful population in eastern Ukraine.