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17.01.2008

There is an article in the Criminal Code against incitement to enmity after all

   

Perhaps for the first time in Ukraine those circulating anti-Semitic material are facing charges under Article 161 § 2 of the Criminal Code “Infringement of equal rights on the basis of racial or ethnic identity or attitude to religion”. 

The Press Secretary of the Jewish Community in Odessa, Boleslav Kapulkin has given details on his webpage.

According to this, in spring 2007, the newspaper “Nashe dyelo” which is registered in Odessa published an article entitled “Kill the best of the goyim”. The author used as pseudonym the name Julius Streicher, after the Nazi publisher of the newspaper Der Stürmer who was sentenced to death at Nuremburg for his prominent role in the Nazi propaganda machine.  The conclusion which the author attempted to foist upon his readers was that Judaism is, from a universal point of view, criminal and immoral, etc

According to Mr Kapulkin such publications are common in this newspaper.  This time, however, the Odessa Region department of the Security Service [SBU] established the author’s identity and on the basis of the information provided, the Odessa Prosecutor initiated a criminal investigation over incitement of inter-ethnic enmity and xenophobia and on 15 January the self-titled “Juliius Streicher was charged under Article 161 § 2 of the Criminal Code. 

The case is to be sent to the Prymorsky Court in Odessa.

While it is not certain that this is the first such case in Ukraine, it is a major problem that because of the wording of Article 161 of the Criminal Code it is seemly difficult to prove the crime.  There may be other reasons as well, but this is doubtless a factor which is considered by prosecutors and other law enforcement bodies which often opt for charges of hooliganism or public order offences instead.

We will be following this case and any others, as well as continuing to push for a revised version of the said Article.

From information published at www.maidan.org.ua

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