On 21 October 2015, with the assistance of the Organization for security and cooperation in Europe in Lviv organized first informal meeting of OSCE representatives and the public under the name " OSCE Lviv Cafe – Tolerance", participants of which were representatives of NGO "Community Development" (“Rozvytok Hromady”)Hrystyna Melekestseva, and Solomiya Starosolska.
The main purpose of the event was to inform the society and comprehensive discussion of intolerance, committing the discriminatory actions toward different groups, which are accompanied by restriction or advantage, denial or reduction of rights. As noted by one of the speakers of the event Lary Olomofe - adviser on combating racism and xenophobia of the Department of tolerance and non-discrimination, member of the Office for democratic institutions and human rights , crimes of hate are widespread, certainly, in all countries, although often particularly brutal. They pose a serious threat both for the victims and for society as a whole; is not only an infringement upon the rights of individuals, and can escalate into conflict and violence on a large scale.
"In Ukraine the problem of xenophobia was officially recognized at the state level recently. However, today we can speak about several forms of its manifestation: the presence in the mass consciousness of xenophobic stereotypes, the spread of intolerance on the Internet and right wing radicalism among young people, including in the football environment, and the like. May there be such a situation in a democratic country? Of course, no. That is why fully support the conduct of monitoring and preventive actions on this subject, which undoubtedly contribute to the development of public policies to combat racism, xenophobia and intolerance and to overcome its declarative nature," said the lawyer, member of the NGO "Community Development" Solomiya Starosolska.
Another important discussion was the issue of the current situation in Eastern Ukraine. Because, as we all know, in this region, there are Special representatives of the OSCE observation mission in Ukraine, which are designed to monitor and implement all principles and commitments of the OSCE. Laura Jeffrey, the representative of the Special Monitoring mission in Ukraine of the OSCE, told about the observations in the East of Ukraine. She emphasized that a tangible improvement of the situation in the ATO zone was the signing of the Minsk agreements, which is indeed very effective for maintaining peace in the region. She noted that people who left their homes and received the status of internally displaced persons are now starting to come back. However, the results of the observations of the representative of the monitoring mission are so, that there is still a threat to thereturn and is a danger to the life of internally displaced persons.
"For our country main task is to ensure safety in the ATO area in Ukraine as a whole. Obvious is the involvement of OSCE observers to gather facts and reliable dates about the course of events in the area of ATO. The representatives of the monitoring mission offer the possibility of effective communication policies and disclosure violations to bring to the attention of the international community. The safety of people is the main task of the international organization, so understanding the prevalence of crimes against society is forcing the international community to promptly identify and respond to events and actions that promote violence. It should be noted the expedience of the activities of the OSCE mission in Eastern Ukraine, as the results of their work were taken into account and we have received international support and assistance," shared Hrystyna Melekestseva, political scientist, member of the NGO "Community Development".