FOR THE FIRST TIME THE MINISTRY FOR VETERANS AFFAIRS HAS ASSUMED THE COORDINATION ON PROVISION OF ASSISTANCE TO PERSONS RELEASED FROM CAPTIVITY
The Ministry for Veterans Affairs, Temporarily Occupied Territories and Internally Displaced Persons of Ukraine has initiated the role of a coordinator between the profile agencies, which should provide assistance and support to those who have been illegally deprived of their personal freedom in the territory of the Russian Federation and temporarily occupied areas of Donetsk and Luhansk Oblasts, the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and Sevastopol.
In order to implement such a decision, the Ministry for Veterans Affairs has developed the relevant Resolution and led the Interdepartmental Working Group.
For the first time, the coordination function to assist those released from captivity and their relatives fell on the Ministry for Veterans Affairs, Temporarily Occupied Territories and Internally Displaced Persons when a large-scale exchange of prisoners took place on December 29. The Ministry for Veterans Affairs is currently coordinating the accommodation of these people, providing them with the necessary physical, mental, legal assistance. Coordination is carried out within the framework of an Interdepartmental Working Group led by the Minister for Veterans Affairs, Oksana Koliada.
«We have to work out the whole mechanism step by step and create a "roadmap" for each agency involved, for the assistance it is assigned to. The agencies should not duplicate each other's work, as has often happened before, but be responsible for their own activities: placement in the hospital, provision of medical examination, treatment, dental prosthesis, restoration of documents, search for temporary housing and employment, etc.», ‒ noted the Minister during the session of Interdepartmental Working Group.
The Ministry for Veterans Affairs also has been given the responsibility of ensuring the work of the Commission, which determines the status of a person who has been deprived of personal freedom.
In addition, the Ministry, together with representatives of the Office of the President, non-governmental organizations, which include the former prisoners, has developed a draft bill that should be submitted to the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine by the President of Ukraine as a matter of urgency. This draft bill will provide for the determination of the status of persons illegally deprived of their personal freedom and are detained in the territory of the Russian Federation, temporarily occupied areas of Donetsk and Luhansk Oblasts and the Crimean Peninsula, as well as relevant social guarantees.
«Currently, while assisting the persons released from captivity, we operate within the framework of Interdepartmental Working Group and guided by the Resolution of the Cabinet of Ministers that we developed and approved in the end of last year. But this process has just begun and needs to be improved and refined. We are waiting for regular exchanges and release of persons and we must be ready to accept them and provide the full range of assistance as quickly and efficiently as possible», ‒ added Oksana Koliada.