Recently, the Coalition organisations have received information that the Russian military is moving civilian hostages and prisoners of war held by Russia in the Kherson region from their places of detention in an unknown direction.
The occupation authorities justify such movements with the need for "evacuation", but the true reasons for these actions are currently unknown to the members of the Coalition. The occupation authorities do not provide any information about the new places of imprisonment to the relatives of the detained persons.
At the same time, we draw the attention of the Ukrainian and international public that the uncontrolled movement of detained persons will most likely lead to the loss by human rights defenders and families of prisoners of the already limited information regarding the list of persons, places and conditions of detention of illegally detained Ukrainian citizens and Ukrainian military personnel who are in Russian captivity. In addition, according to the information available to the Coalition, most of the detained persons have serious injuries and health problems after brutal torture and prolonged stay in unsuitable premises and inhumane conditions. For many prisoners, transportation without proper medical care can cause additional suffering or even lead to death.
Currently, we are talking about hundreds of people who were held in various locations in the Kherson region. As of October 20, it is known that prisoners are being moved in an unknown direction from:
- Kherson pretrial detention facility in Kherson (address: 10 Perekopska St.);
- State institution "Northern Correctional Colony (No. 90)" (address: 234 Nekrasova St.);
- the building of temporary detention centre No. 1 of the Headquarters of the National Police in the Kherson region (address: 3 Teploenerhetykiv St.).
We call on Ukrainian and international institutions and diplomatic missions to take the processes of transportation of Ukrainian prisoners of war and civilian hostages held by Russia under special control, record their movements and demand from the Russian Federation to provide information on the direction and purpose of such movements, places and conditions of their further detention, and ensure access of representatives of international institutions to prisoners of war.
At the same time, we draw the public's attention to the fact that holding civilian hostages is a gross violation of international law, and they must be unconditionally released. Torture and inhumane treatment of civilians and prisoners of war must be stopped immediately.