Ban on any peaceful assembly upheld
The Kyiv Court of Appeal on 20 June 2013 upheld a court order banning any peaceful protest outside the Prosecutor General’s Office.
A number of NGOs had lodged the appeal over a ruling from the District Administrative Court in Kyiv on 28 February. This ruling was in response to an application from the Kyiv City State Administration and banned any meetings at all outside the Prosecutor General’s Office for two months, from 1 March to 30 April 2013.
The arguments given for this ban included protecting the peace and quiet of residents in adjacent buildings, the educational process in the nearby school, as well as the claim that street protests disturbed the peace.
Perfectly peaceful protests thus banned included protests against illegal extradition of refugees; a demonstration in support of Vinnytsa Human Rights Group Coordinator, Dmytro Groisman; as well as against blanket bans on peaceful assembly.
The blanket ban meant that in each case the organizers of the planned protest were not even able to appear as parties, opposing the ban.
The NGOs plan to appeal against this new ruling to the High Administrative Court. If necessary, the Without Borders Project, one of the NGOs involved says, they will take this to the European Court of Human Rights.