war crimes in Ukraine

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Chernigiv judges learned the freedom of peaceful assemblies and discussed the film about the storm of the town council

On 25-26 the seminar for judges of the Chernigiv region “The right for freedom of peaceful assemblies. Article 11 of the Convention on protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms” was held in Chernigiv in the building of the Educational-methodical center if the region council of federation of trade unions. The seminar was organized by the Chernigiv regional public committee of human rights protection jointly with the Federation of assistance to justice and the Appeal court of the Chernigiv region.

The seminar was devoted to the right to peaceful assemblies, problems of restriction of realization by citizens of the right for freedom of peaceful assemblies, meetings and demonstrations. Rather great attention of judges was evoked by the question of the beforehand informing of the organs of local self-government about conduction of meetings, assemblies, etc. The participants were interested with the practices of other courts concerning this problem and the decisions of the Constitutional Court. Guarantees of the right for freedom of gatherings were discussed from the viewpoint of their correlation in Ukrainian legislation and the Convention on human rights and fundamental freedoms. The judges familiarized themselves with practices and recommendations of the European Court of human rights on these questions.

Before the beginning of the seminar the video record was demonstrated to the participants, which record had been made by the Chernigiv regional public committee of human rights protection. The video record concerned the events of 26 November 2004, when the participants of the 10-thousand meeting under the leadership of MP Mykola Rudkovskiy tried to occupy the building of the Chernigiv town council. The record made a great impression on the judges, and, after the vivid discussion, they decided to create a documentary film on the basis of these materials and to spread this film through Ukraine in order to make such events impossible in future.

Speeches on the seminar were delivered by Volodymir Cheremis, the head of the institute “Respublika”, ex-organizer of the tent camp “Ukraine without Kuchma”, candidate of law Mykola Gnatovskiy, a representative of the Institute of international right at T. Shevchenko State University, and advocate Oleksandr Nagorny.

In the course of the seminar and the discussion on the problem of freedom of peaceful assemblies in Ukraine, the present drew the conclusion that the number of cases connected with this right would rise steeply, because many people were taking part in public mass actions under the influence of the “orange revolution”. This is also confirmed by the latest events in the Chernigiv region. Besides, the judges-participants pointed out the necessity of regulation of responsibility of the organizers of meetings and rallies that resulted in mass illegal deeds.

The considered seminar has been carried out in the framework of the project “Introduction of international norms into the legal proceedings of Ukraine”, which is realized by the Chernigiv regional public committee of human rights protection in cooperation with the Appeal court of the Chernigiv region and the Chernigiv regional Center of raising the level of skill for judges. The project is financially supported by the program “Democratic grants” of the US Embassy in Ukraine. The goal of the project is promotion of implementation of international legal norms into the legal proceedings in Ukraine by means of conduction of seminars for judges of local courts of the Chernigiv region and preparation of educational materials for them.

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