"The concentration of sulphur dioxide in the air [in northern Crimea] has exceeded the norm. However, it is still unknown to what extent the norm is exceeded. The occupation authorities in the person of Sergey Aksyonov announced that the work of the Crimean Titan plant had been suspended for two weeks. In addition, the unplanned vacations were announced in local schools, and children were sent to health resorts. The fact that the state of emergency has not been announced yet, the adult population is not being evacuated and the occupying power continues to quiet down people gives rise to concern," Ismail Khalikov, the representative of the Ukrainian Parliament Commissioner for Human Rights for observance of the rights of residents of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol, posted on Facebook.
"The residents of the towns of Armyansk and Krasnoperekopsk told me that the oily yellow-tinged rust-like residues had been formed primarily on the roofs of the houses and metal objects in the apartments. The number of patients in hospitals has increased several-fold. People mainly complain about cough, inflammation of the mucous membrane of mouth, nose, throat and eyes. It is surprising that the patients are diagnosed with acute respiratory disease or allergy. There is a shortage of absorbents, gauze bandages and antihistamines in local pharmacies," Ismail Khalikov noted.
He stressed that signs of the environmental disaster are visible to the naked eye: the metal things continue to be covered with rust, leaves massively fall from trees (some look like burnt), there is acidic smell in the air, dead birds lay on the lawns.
This information will be submitted to the international organizations (UN, OSCE, WHO, International Committee of the Red Cross) with a view to documenting the facts of human rights violations. In addition, an appeal will be sent to the Prosecutor's Office of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea to initiate the criminal proceedings against the people involved in violation of the environmental rights of citizens in the temporarily occupied territories of Ukraine and the threat to their lives, the representative of the Commissioner said, stressing that he continues to monitor the situation in the north of Crimea.
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