NGOs report increased surveillance, questions, etc from the authorities
Civic organizations have recently recorded an increase in monitoring by the authorities of their activities, the civic partnership “New Citizen” informs. Information about NGOs is, for example, being gathered by the State Tax Service and State Administrations.
They report that a number of authoritative civic organizations within New Citizen, including the Media Law Institute, TORO – the contact group in Ukraine for Transparency International and others, recently received a questionnaire from district tax administrations with extremely detailed questions about personal data and activities.
They were asked, for example, for the full names, positions and contact details for the heads and people in responsible positions within the organization; who one turns to about running events; how large-scale the organisation is; the main areas of activity, etc; whether they are disposed to cooperate with the State Tax Service, and others.
NGOs also report official approaches from regional and district State Administrations to the local authorities about increasing monitoring of local civic organizations. For example, an instruction from the Department on Internal Security of the Khmelnytsky Regional State Administration which obliges the heads of District Administrations and city Mayors “to urgently increase work with bodies of local self-government on monitoring of applications from civic-political associations and individuals on planned protests, demonstrations, gatherings, and circulation of printed matter”, as well as “to immediately inform the department about the planned holding and results of the said events”, with a phone number being given. This report must contain “not general phrases, but exhaustive information about the course and results of the event; the names and positions of the organizers; the number and category of participants; the slogans, flags, list of those speaking and the main points of their address; evaluation of the activities of the authorities; the reaction of the local authorities; the results; further actions planned; participation in the protests of National Deputies, leaders at regional level.” The document also mentions heightening surveillance over the activities as per their articles of association of the branches of political parties and civic organizations with a political bent.
The local authorities have also received such instructions from the Kamyanets-Podilsky District State Administration in the Khmelnytski region.