Ana Ursachi: Moldova has great shortcomings in eradication of torture and ill-treatment

The Republic of Moldova fails to eradicate torture and ill-treatment and inhuman or degrading treatment. “It happens because at intuitional level, the citizens elected managers who, for their part, elected the executive bodies and, when it comes to the prosecution service, we witness a big disaster here as the same prosecutors who covered those who used torture, due to whom the Republic of Moldova was convicted for multiple times by the ECHR, work in the managerial bodies of the prosecution service. As the victims didn’t receive any award on the part of the state, the conviction by the ECHR continues to be seen as a danger, lawyer Ana Ursachi, head of the Association for the Protection of Human Rights “Freedom Advocacy” (Brussels), stated in a public debate at IPN.

“In the Prosecutor General’s Office, there is a chief who is in charge of the combating and prevention of torture, Ion Caracuian, whose signature is on hundreds of ordinances that actually protected the users of torture. The eradication of torture and ill-treatment and inhuman or degrading treatment at global level is one of the EU’s objectives, as is the prevention and prohibition of these, the holding of culprits accountable and obtaining of damages for the victims,” stated Ana Ursachi. According to her, this is what Moldovan society wants in the “post-state capture” period. “A segment of society calls the process “lustration”, while another one – simply “equity”. The support for the independent monitoring of jails and places of deprivation of liberty is also a priority of the European Union and is a duty of the Ombudsperson’s Office of the Republic of Moldova,” she stated.

Another priority of the European Union is to protect the human rights defenders. “In the democratic states of the world, in relation to the legal representatives of the victims of human rights violations, there is a serious approach to the dangers to which the families of people who work in the field of human rights are exposed,” stated Ana Ursachi. She reminded of cases when human rights defenders were killed, like in Turkey, or their families were held hostage so as to undermine the activity of human rights defender, as it happens in Russia, Kazakhstan or Turkmenistan. Moldova also has shortcomings in dealing with violations of such a kind. In particular, there are serious dangers to the independence of human rights defenders. These persons continue to be victims of harassment, media lynching, hate speech, propaganda and disinformation, while the EU strategy will set out very clear rules for Moldovan society as well to get rid of noxious viruses. The practices dating from the regime of Plahotniuc should be ended. Also, the political cases haven’t been dealt with. Only three of the 38 political cases enumerated by the prosecutor general were dropped, while the rest are sabotaged and the persons who are victims of political persecution continue to be persecuted.

Another important element of the EU plan of action in the field of human rights is the stepping up of efforts to encourage measures to ensure the protection of the citizens who take part in armed conflicts, including to strengthen the civil and humanitarian infrastructure. The protection of the multiple and intersected forms of discrimination, including on grounds of sex, ethnicity, color, genetic characteristics, language, religion, faith, politics and others is another important moments and the EU wants Moldova to align  itself with this desideratum. Moldova has many shortcomings and two cycles of government may not be enough to solve this problem, no matter how efficient the activity is. Moldova also lags behind in eliminating domestic violence and violence against women.

In another development, Ana Ursachi said that Moldova should insist on the disposal of the Russian troops and munitions from its territory. This thing should be requested firmly from the government. Moldova can ask the UN and the Human Rights Council to delegate a special rapporteur for monitoring the situation in the Transnistrian region and Moldovan society should align itself publicly with the ECHR decisions on the violation of human rights in the Transnistrian region by the Russian Federation.

The public debate “Dangers to democracy in the contemporary world: impact on the Republic of Moldova” was staged by IPN as part of the Developing Political Culture through Public Debates Project that is supported by the Hanns Seidel Foundation.

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