On Thursday, the European Parliament adopted three resolutions on the respect for human rights in Ukraine, Uganda and Tanzania, and Nicaragua.
Forced deportation of Ukrainian civilians to, and the forced adoption of Ukrainian children in, Russia
Parliament strongly condemns the reported atrocities committed by the Russian Armed Forces, their proxies, and the various occupation authorities in Ukraine. In their resolution, MEPs highlight, in particular the forcible deportation of Ukrainian civilians, including children, to Russia, as well as Russia’s abhorrent practices in so-called ‘filtration camps’, where families are separated and those who are deemed ‘unreliable’ disappear.
MEPs call on Russia to fully abide by its obligations under international law and immediately cease the forced deportation and forcible transfer of Ukrainian civilians to Russia and the Russian-occupied territories. They also demand an end to all forced transfers of children, as well as any inter-country adoptions of children transferred from within Ukraine’s internationally recognised borders.
While noting that a forcible transfer is a war crime and a potential crime against humanity, MEPs demand the Russian government repeals all legislation facilitating the adoption of Ukrainian children.
The text was adopted by show of hands. It will be available in full here. (15.09.2022)
The violations of human rights in Uganda and Tanzania linked to investments in fossil fuels projects
Parliament expresses grave concern about arrests, of intimidation and judicial harassment against human rights defenders and NGOs working in the oil and gas sector in Uganda, and calls on the authorities to immediately release anyone arrested arbitrarily.
MEPs say more than 100,000 people are at imminent risk of displacement due to the EACOP project, with inefficient guarantees of adequate compensation. They ask authorities to adequately compensate people for lost property and land. Parliament also demands the Ugandan authorities allow unhindered access to the zone covered by the project for civil society organizations, independent journalists, international observers and investigative researchers.
Relatedly, MEPs urge TotalEnergies to study the feasibility of an alternative route for the project to better protect sensitive ecosystems and the water resources of Uganda and Tanzania, and limit the impact on the watersheds in the African Great Lakes region.
Parliament also expresses its concern about the growing economic influence of China and Russia, in particular in the energy sector; and in this regard is concerned by the interest of Uganda’s authorities in developing a nuclear power plant with Russian assistance.
The resolution was adopted by show of hands. For more details, it will be available in full here. (15.09.2022)
Nicaragua and the arrest of the Bishop Rolando Álvarez
Parliament condemns in the strongest possible terms the escalating repression against the Catholic Church, opposition figures, civil society, human rights defenders, journalists, peasants, students and indigenous people in Nicaragua. MEPs point in particular to the arbitrary arrest of Bishop Rolando Álvarez, and call for his and others’ immediate and unconditional release and the annulment of all legal proceedings against them.
Nicaragua’s judicial system lacks independence, according to MEPs, and the law is used as a tool to criminalise the exercise of civil and political rights. Parliament is concerned about the 206 political prisoners in the country, deplores the arbitrary closure of another hundred NGOs, and condemns the banning of opposition political parties.
MEPs strongly urge Nicaragua to repeal legislation that unduly restricts the country’s civic and democratic space and they ask the EU to continue supporting civil society organizations there. Parliament wants the EU and the UN Security Council to open a formal investigation into Nicaragua and its president, Daniel Ortega, for crimes against humanity.
The resolution was adopted by 538 votes in favour, 16 against with 28 abstentions. For further details, the full version will be available here (15.09.2022).