Bousquet Will Publicize Results to French Public
Introduction by Karl Pomeroy
January 14, 2016
Jacques Clostermann, president of the association “My country France,” the coalition of Marine Le Pen, led a delegation of French human rights activists on a visit to Donetsk January 12. The group toured the Donetsk airport and its surroundings for the purpose of recording the war crimes of the Ukrainian army. In particular, the representatives of France visited the village of Oktyabrsky, which had been badly damaged by UAF shelling. Local residents told the participants of the delegation about the conditions in which they had to survive in the immediate vicinity of the front line, how they had to leave when their houses came under punitive fire. “I, as a lawyer, have the duty to protect the people and publicize the results of this trip to the French public,” said lawyer Josy Jean Bousquet.
The two articles presented below discuss the French delegation’s tour of Donetsk. The first report was taken from the French version of Sputnik News, the second from the English. The French account offers more hard-hitting and detailed criticism of Kiev’s punitive operations, implying Sputnik News waters down its reports for the American and British audience. Following these is a Ruptly TV video of the event, and a News Front article on submitting the findings to the European Court of Human Rights.
Jacques Clostermann: In Donbass It’s About Survival
Autotranslation from French (with minor editing by Quemado Institute)
January 13, 2016
“Our mission today is to listen, to watch and relate to our French friends what is happening in Donbass,” said Jacques Clostermann, stressing that “no one in France speak of Donbass”.
“We were struck by two things. The first is the intensity of the destruction of public works, bridges, roads that were obviously works of a strategic nature. But we were also struck by how many objects that had no military significance were badly destroyed. I speak of a convent, a church, a cemetery, I mean poor people homes, buildings, one of which was bombed 42 times,” said Mr. Clostermann, a former fighter pilot like his father.
According to him, the only thing that interested the people of Donbass is to be left alone. “People say: leave us alone, we were here, we want to continue to speak Russian (…) because we have been Russians for generations,” said the President of My Country France.
According to him, the cease-fire is still not respected in the region. “This morning we were near the front line. We heard shots. But it turns out that the shootings occur most often at night. However, we learned that OSCE missions were carried out during the day. So the people who are there to inspect, to look at what’s going on here militarily, are not there when the shooting takes place,” noted the interlocutor of the agency.
He was terrified of some reported facts. “It’s hard to say, but a tank that arrives in the city and starts shooting everywhere, troops are often under the influence of alcohol …” said Jacques Clostermann. According to him, the stories of the inhabitants of Donbass suggest that the Ukrainian army “is not really under the effective control of a military framework.”
After noting that the leaders of Donbass absolutely respected the Minsk-2 agreements, the former French fighter pilot said that people, including soldiers, whom he met on this trip had the “intention of implementing these agreements. ”
Referring to life in Donbass ravaged by war, Jacques Clostermann said that “people lived through very serious things in very difficult conditions.”
“People live in basements, with children. We have seen cities where there is no heating. They live in extremely precarious conditions, but they have a lot of courage,” said the interlocutor to Sputnik.
“They told us that, luckily, through humanitarian aid from Russia, they could continue to live. What we have seen, this is not life, it’s survival,” said President of My Country France.
Asked about the war coverage in the French media, Jacques Clostermann noted that in France, “very few people have actually heard talk about what was happening in Donbass”. He stressed at the same time, he would now seize all opportunities that would be available to him to talk about what he saw in this region.
“I am very surprised to see Bernard-Henri Lévy and Bernard Kouchner [at -tr?] Maidan, alongside the Azov battalions or people who openly proclaim Nazism. And I do not see them here in Donbass, where the situation is very serious (…) However, when I see these neo-Nazi groups received in Nantes and at press conferences, I am surprised,” said the interlocutor to Sputnik.
He also reported having heard that the Turkish military and jihadists Daesh come to fight against the soldiers of the People’s Republics of Donetsk.
French Delegation Visits East Ukraine, Talks About Horrors of War
Sputnik (English version)
January 13, 2016
The residents of Donbass aren’t living, they’re simply trying to survive, Clostermann told Sputnik.
The delegation of French human rights activists consisted of Jacques Clostermann, the leader of the human rights organization My Country France and two human rights lawyers, Josy-Jean Bousquet and Hanen Maksud, according to Novorossia Today News Agency.
“People live in basements with their children. We have seen entire cities where there is no heating. They said they continue to exist only with the help of Russian humanitarian aid… What we have seen is not living, it’s survival,” Clostermann said, according to Radio Sputnik.
The level of utter destruction in Donbass has shocked the French human rights activists. Ruins are everywhere — public buildings, roads, bridges, and even buildings which have no military value, such as churches, cemeteries and houses, have been destroyed with an intense ferocity, the French human rights activist said.
Despite an official ceasefire, shooting continues to happen near the front line. The shooting mostly takes place at night, while OSCE ceasefire control missions happen during days. That way, the OSCE can seldom record fire near the front line, the member of the French delegation said.
“We were told about an armored battle tank, which comes into a town and starts shooting around. Soldiers from the Ukrainian Army are often drunk. We had an impression that the Ukrainian Army is out of control,” Clostermann said.
The French human rights activist said it was the first time his group had visited Donbass; however, they want to come back to eastern Ukraine again in three or four months with a much bigger group.
Next time, members of French media should come along to Donbass to see the situation in the region with their own eyes, Clostermann said, adding that he would tell everyone back home about everything that he had seen in Ukraine during his trip.
Southeastern Ukraine has been suffering from a crisis triggered by a military operation to suppress local independence supporters launched by Kiev authorities in April 2014 to quell secession moves.
In February of 2015, representatives of the central government in Kiev and Donbass independence supporters signed a deal on Ukrainian reconciliation in the Belarusian capital of Minsk.
Ukraine: Jacques Clostermann Leads French
Delegation to Donetsk (VIDEO)
Published on Jan 12, 2016
A delegation of French campaigners inspected Donetsk airport during a fact finding mission to east Ukraine on Tuesday.
Reporter (French): “Is what happened here Fascism?”
Jacques Clostermann (French): “Certainly, certainly. But it’s very difficult to explain that less than 2,500 km from Paris, there are horrors such as the ones that have occurred here, among these people. It’s also difficult to explain that these people fought for their freedom, and that everything that happened here was in the name of liberty for the people themselves, for the rights of the people to self-determination. This is something extraordinary.”
Jacques Clostermann (French): “I think that there is an evolution in the opinions of the French. The French are very poorly informed about what happened in the Donbass. You know, there are few people who know the name “Donbass”. Our mission is also to show to the French, who are from across the political spectrum, the Left and the Right, and to the French law makers about what happened in Donbass and to watch, to analyse, to listen to you, and to consider, in France, what they have seen and what they have heard.”
For video, click here: Ruptly TV
French Lawyers Help Donbass People Defend Rights
Edited autotranslation from Russian by Quemado Institute
January 13, 2016
French human rights activists are ready to help residents of Donbass defend their rights before the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR), said the president of the French League of Human Rights Advocates Josy Jean Bousquet. This was announced today at a meeting with representatives of Donetsk and Luhansk People’s Republic. “I believe that Donbass needs colleagues that will offer legal aid. I am a lawyer, and this is why coming here, and I plan to work with other lawyers from Germany, Italy, France and so on, to bring the matter to the European Court of Human Rights, which has won human rights everywhere. And this is what I started to deal with today,” said Bousquet.
At today’s meeting, which was held in the capital of the Donetsk People’s Republic, the DPR and PR authorities turned over to delegates from France photo and video materials, expert opinion confirming the involvement of Kiev in war crimes against the civilian population, in order to transfer them to the ECHR.
Recall that the delegation of human rights activists arrived at the DPR on January 11, and on January 12 the French visited the village of Oktyabrsky in the district of the Donetsk airport, as well as the cities of Debaltsevo and Uglegorsk. There they talked to residents and heads of local administrations. Those, in turn, spoke to the foreigners about the crimes of the Ukrainian punitives.
After that, a member of the delegation Jacques Klostermann, president of the association “My country, France,” the coalition of Marine Le Pen’s party “National Front”, described the actions of the militants in Kiev as terrorism.