war crimes in Ukraine

The Tribunal for Putin (T4P) global initiative was set up in response to the all-out war launched by Russia against Ukraine in February 2022.

In the area of human rights. Overview



The article 3 of the Constitution of Ukraine proclaims that “The human being, his or her life and health… and security are recognized in Ukraine as the highest social value. Human rights and freedoms and their guarantees determine the essence and orientation of the activity of the State … To affirm and ensure human rights and freedoms is the main duty of the State." In fact, this article remains sheer declaration.

In 2005-2009, during continuous strife of political forces for power the opponents recalled human rights only for legitimating of their own actions and made nothing real to improve the situation. It is rather difficult to do something to this effect under political instability, when any step of government body, bill or assignment to the post were primarily estimated from the point of view of future advantages in political strife. The politization of any issue and decision in the light of interests of the political force, but not of the interests of society and state, caused that, following the short-lived improvement in 2005, the state with human rights either stagnated or deteriorated. The political expediency and departmental interests of government bodies prevail over interests of citizens; therefore these bodies study their own or momentary state interests instead of pursuing interests of human rights. The improvements, which did take place due to the NGOs efforts, occurred without support of the state, or even contrary to it.

The same about the local self-government bodies. For example, in Kharkiv, in 2009, under pretence of absence of city budgetary financing, they liquidated the TB hospital for 675 beds during epidemic. It should be noted that the article 3 of Constitution belongs to foundations of the constitutional system of Ukraine; its juridical sense entails that during realization of any social payments, the determination of budgetary financing of health care for the citizens of Ukraine must take priority. Strictly speaking, the health care for the population of Ukraine must be carried out at the expense of all material resources of the state. For any impartial person, in this case the Kharkiv authorities turn article 3 into sheer hypocrisy.

The key condition of observance of human rights and basic freedoms is a strong and independent judicial authority. The disrespect for justice, mechanisms of support of independence of courts, their authority convert protection of human rights into an illusion. When courts do not work, it remains only to raise a hue and cry hoping to wake up the conscience of powers that be and attract their attention to the gross violations of human rights.

Everybody tries to infringe upon the authority of justice! The top brass constantly affords not to execute court decisions, violate them, and offend the judiciary naming them a mafia, although they mean those, which have been caught red-handed or adopted an objectionable decision… All the time the judges are kept on a short leash due to underfunded judicial system. Whence will the respect to justice proceed? No wonder, for several years now the parliament has been failing to pass bills intended to implement progressive Concept intended to improve judicial practice and promote fair trial[2].

There remains a topical problem of implementation of court decisions: annually over 70% of civil judgments stay unpaid. Annually over 80% of rulings of the European court on human rights against Ukraine apply to violations of section 1, art. 6 of European Convention as a result of violation of reasonable duration of trial and non-fulfillment of court decisions, in particular about wages payable or other payments by public and other enterprises and establishments. And for five years the state did nothing, to change procedure of accrued payroll and pay wages. Other system violations of the right to fair trial include the lack of professional responsibility of judges; violation of presumption of innocence and right to defense; insufficient validity of court decisions; almost complete absence of acquittals; absence of independent expert appraisal.

The absence of public data, transparency and accountability of power to society, groundless classification of information and limitation of free exchange of information seem the most dangerous for the future of our country as compared to other violations of human rights. And the point is not only that it creates positive environment for topping corruption. The infomedia sustain all political, administrative, economic and any other decisions in all areas of human activity. The more information is available, the more reasonable and effective decisions there will be. The most important political decisions usually have legal rationale and become fixed in normative acts. So, we have the three-level system of decision making: information, policy, and law. It may be represented as a tree structure: roots, trunk, and crown. The tree is the larger and stronger, the more developed is the rootage. And when at legal (third) level they adopt acts which banning or limiting access of participants of the problematic political discussions (second level) to information (to the first level), then the quality of political decisions deteriorates inevitably. It is not natural, when a crown prevents roots from feeding a tree. It occurs every so often, when executive power or even parliamentary agencies try to limit and control the dataflow. It is usually done with the best intentions, but isolationist societies begin stagnating, their intellectual elites emigrate, and economic complex turns into the raw material appendage of more open and therefore more dynamic neighbors. Thus, it is necessary to revise the priorities of information policy and fix the openness of information at the legislative level.

There are also these human rights violations, which in 2009 caused the greatest concern: the practice of systematic torture and other forms of ill-treatment and arbitrary or unjustified detention and arrests by law enforcers. According to the Constitution, the detention must be made by a court ruling, and only as an exception without sanctions, while in practice, everything is done to the contrary. The illegal violence used to coerce confession in committing a crime is widespread, and it is extremely difficult to root out this practice, as it is considered a norm, and you can fix a criminal as you like. The absence of effective investigation by the office of public prosecutor, acknowledged in many rulings of European court on human rights, lack of proper judicial control of the methods of inquiry and sufficient powers of courts for exclusion of evidence coerced with the tortures and other forms of maltreatment creates an atmosphere of impunity, when tortures become a routine.

The political opponents tried to use law enforcement authorities as instruments of political strife. And the top brass gives evidence of it maintaining that their communications are controlled; despite repeated statements nobody has looked into it. It is indirectly confirmed by substantial rise (over 1.5 times as compared with 2005) of data readout from communication channels sanctioned by appeal courts: 15m in 2005, over 25m in 2008. These numbers are much higher than that in the European countries, where annually over 1000 sanctions are issued only in France and in the Netherlands. One third of 2008 sanctions were given to the operational units of SSU. Such increased surveillance of military and policing branches of the citizens is troublesome; the more so, when the guarantees of the right to privacy remain very weak. Meanwhile the introduction of ID tax code as a universal personal ID illegally used in all operations, constant attempts to enter biometrical data to new foreign and internal passports and other illegal actions overtly violate the right to privacy.

The State penal department, which guards its closeness and impunity carefully, goes on bungling the job. It is only public authority in Ukraine, which underwent no changes during independence, remains unreformed and anachronous. The reshuffle in August 2009 gave hope of reforms, but it seems that fate has decreed otherwise.

Other law enforcement authorities also need reformation, especially office of public prosecutor, which executes unusual functions of general supervision and its full powers may lead to conflict of interests.

The national commission on strengthening of democracy and promoting the rule-of-law worked out a progressive Concept of reformation of criminal justice[3], which is a good basis for reformation. However the state is in no haste to reform law enforcement authorities. Even submission to the parliament of the Criminal procedure code, which they kept drafting times without number and the adoption of which might further changes in law enforcement authorities, was time and again put aside, although there was a long-standing consensus of legislators about this bill.

In 2008-2009 the National commission on public morality stepped up its activity. To our mind, its decisions were groundless and disproportionate interference with realization of freedom of expression of opinion, these interferences met no public necessities. In general, the existence of special agency on protection of public morality is doubtful in democratic society.

The brutal violations of right of ownership continued, in particular, illegal seizure of lands or other property contrary to the law, wish and decisions of local territorial communities or proprietors. The chairmen of settlement radas where illegally brought before court, when they opposed the illegal seizure of land.

The political freedom at home was curbed step by step. The constitutional reform in 2004 triggered the real crisis of passive right to vote. In accordance with the article 38 of Constitution " Citizens have the right to participate in the administration of state affairs, in All-Ukrainian and local referendums, to freely elect and to be elected to bodies of state power and bodies of local self-government. " However, the Law on parliamentary elections foresees no free access of citizens to the passive voting right. And when political parties list exceptionally their own members in the electoral register, it means brutal violation of Constitution––the right to be elected. It actually means introduction of imperative mandate without prior arrangement. It seems that the soviet "democratic centralism" remains an ideal for the political elite of Ukraine. Under current electoral system the independents wishing to participate in a political process without joining a party (each of which surprisingly reminds of the CPSU) are left in the basket. Neither their intellect nor organizational capabilities are used that precipitates the decline of political elites.

In the second half of 2008 the political crisis was aggravated by full-blown economic crisis, which the government struggled to control; the difficulties were triggered by the loss of dirigibility and impossibility to make decisions quickly. The poor and middle class took the telling blow. The poor found it harder to survive as a result of climbing price and inflation, increase of utility rates and absence of adequate social protection; as a result, they got into greater dependence upon their employers reminding us of feudality. The mounting unemployment grew, especially the hidden one, affected the skilled and office employees. The dip of GDP was the biggest in Europe. The scale-of-living gap between rich and poor became even greater.

Under such conditions the state with economic and social rights could but worsen; especially as ensuring and defense of these rights is not a priority for the government. Like in 2007, the government held up the realization of economic and social rights in the budget 2008 and 2009 despite the decision of the Constitutional court prohibiting of suspense of rights by the annual appropriation act. That is, the government demonstratively did not wish to execute the decision of the Constitutional court on protection of socio-economic rights.

Summarizing the overview of human rights in 2009, we should conclude that the country, with some exceptions, had no integral policy intended to improvement situation with human rights and fundamental freedoms. Attempts of NGOs, subdivisions and individual employees from MIA and Ministry of Justice, National commission for strengthening of democracy and rule-of-law to improve the situation caused certain progress, but political crisis, attitude of political forces toward human rights as to something second-rate and insignificant as against political expediency hampered changes for the better. There remained tasks to strengthen the constitutional guarantees of human rights and fundamental freedoms, adopt the new Criminal procedure code, conduct reform the judicial system and criminal justice in accordance with the concepts decreed by the President, change priorities of information policy passing the bills "About the access to public information", "About information", "About public broadcasting", about NGOs and, revise the laws about protection of public morality and its usage, to re-draft bills about free legal aid, about convocation of peaceful collections, draft Code about labor substantially violating human rights. The revised legislation might become a basis for humane penal law policy, change of social policy and further reforms. These changes could be triggered by presidential elections in the early 2010. However, in the wake of the elections the situation with human rights and fundamental freedoms deteriorated even more.

New tendencies concerning human rights violations in 2010

Following the elections, have not only failed to demonstrate any intention to improve the situation, but have even reduced the positive processes which had been underway and new trends in violations of human rights have emerged, together with disregard for such rights. Thus, there has been a strong attack on civil rights and political liberties.

There were far more violations of freedom of peaceful assemblies during this period then from 2005-2009 put together. On 25 March the Cabinet of Ministers issued an instruction to the Kyiv City State Administration “on using comprehensive measures for organizing work with citizens and their organizations, including preventing and stopping in future the holding of protests near the premises of the President’s Administration and the Cabinet of Ministers”. This instruction is a flagrant violation of freedom of peaceful assembly and a number of articles of the Constitution.

This was while the Minister of Internal Affairs stated that for peaceful gatherings one should allocate “some big field on the outskirts of Kyiv where nobody will disturb anybody”. Traffic Police officers prevented people from many regions getting to Kyiv for an opposition rally on 11 May. The transport companies were warned that they could have their licenses removed if they took the people to the rally. Only one nationwide TV channel, STB, reported this. In general, the use of the police as an instrument in fighting political opponents and the public has become a regular feature. For example, in Kharkiv on 15 May police officers prevented local residents from holding a peaceful protest over the rubbish being left on the city streets. Two protesters were detained. During the events to mark President Yanukovych’s first 100 days in office on 3 June, the police obstructed opposition supporters from holding a protest near the Ukraina Palace where the President was giving his address. At the same time, activists from the Party of the Regions were able to hold a meeting in support of Yanukovych opposite the Palace without any obstruction. On 8 July the traffic police prevented buses with member of the Front for Change (led by Arseny Yatsenyuk) from Zaporizhya, Mykolaiv, Ternopil and Chernihiv from getting to a rally in Kyiv against the draft Tax Code. On 27-28 July the traffic police prevented pilgrims from the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Kyiv Patriarchate from getting to Kyiv for the events around the Festival of the Baptism of Kyivan Rus. The list of cases where the police have interfered in political and civic actions is getting longer and longer. More detailed review on human rights abuses from the side of police is given below in the separate subsection.

Both Ukrainian and international experts have reported a marked deterioration in the situation with freedom of expression since the end of February 2010. You can still find a lot of material critical of the new administration on the Internet and in the printed media. However on television censorship has re-emerged in various ways, including banning or simply avoidance of reports critical of the government, reduction in editorial control and the issuing of specific instructions to include or remove certain political issues and facts. In general the news on television and radio stations have again become bland and vapid, and talk more about natural and other cataclysms abroad than events in Ukraine. The reduction in freedom of expression can also be seen in the disappearance of several hard-hitting talk shows, and the cancellation of the broadcasting licenses of two independent TV stations, TVi and Kanal 5.

The number of physical attacks and cases of harassment of journalists has increased in the last six months, with the reaction of the authorities being inadequate. Those responsible have not been held to account. Vasyl Klymentyev, Chief Editor of the newspaper "New Style" disappeared on 11 August in Kharkiv. Klymentyev’s disappearance is reportedly linked to his reporting on corruption in the Kharkiv region. The police initiated a homicide investigation despite his body not yet being found. Investigation, in our opinion, is sluggish and inefficient.

There has been a considerable reduction in political liberty overall. The Rector of the Ukrainian Catholic University Father Boris Gudzyak reported that an SSU [Security Service of Ukraine] officer had tried to get him to sign a letter, without leaving him even a copy, in which the Rector would agree to warn students off taking part in any protests “not authorized by the authorities” Father Gudzyak did not even read the letter and made the visit public. It is, however, certain that many rectors of institutes signed such a letter. We are also aware of a separate Order from 22 April this year according to which in district Departments of Education in Kyiv and in each secondary school,  people were appointed responsible for “providing information regarding the city authorities, enhancing the quality of information and analytical material on socio-political and highly publicized events in the city and districts, including providing swift information about what is happening in the district on a day to day basis”. The motive for the issue of this order is simple: “increasing the attention of the President’s Administration leadership to information regarding the city authorities”, and this information will be sent to the department of internal policy of the State administration.

The existence of such letters from the SSU and orders demonstrate the wish to impose total control over civic life in educational institutions. At the same time, students across the country, particularly those protesting against the new Minister of Education, have for some time complained of being under pressure. At present this is on the level of “preventive chats” in the Dean’s office, yet these are laced with threats of expulsion if the students don’t give up protest activities. The SSU has applied the same “preventive measures” with regard to activists of NGOs in connection with their protest activities and journalists.

It is clear that we are dealing here with “prophylactic measures”, when the SSU have taken a written undertaking from blogger Oleh Shynkarenko to not criticize the authorities “in strong form” on his Live Journal blog. Everybody now knows that the SSU not only reads individual blogs but may turn up on their authors’ doorsteps. Obviously, in all democratic countries secret surveillance does take place aimed at preventing terrorist acts or real threats to the life of a public figure or to State security. Neither the blogger who wrote the words “kill the reptile” with President Yanukovych in mind, nor the members of the Kharkiv regional branch of the Union of Ukrainian Youth [SUM] who wrote a letter to President Obama, nor Nico Lange, Director of the Kyiv Office of the Konrad Adenauer Foundation, who wrote a critical article about authoritarian tendencies during Yanukovych’s first 100 days in office, presented any such danger. If they had, then the blogger and representatives of SUM would have been arrested so that their criminal behaviour could be proved by the court, and Nico Lange would not, after 10 gruelling hours at the airport, have been let back into the country (although the Prosecutor General’s Office, as well as the SSU, have still officially called his actions "interference in Ukraine’s internal affairs).

In a democratic country such intimidation and pressure on citizens and guests to the country are not merely prohibited by law, but absolutely unthinkable, and there is simply no place for so called “prophylactic measures”.

The policy on memory has changed radically. Material on the history of political repression has been removed from the websites of the President and regional administrations. New attempts to foist a Soviet view of history, and to rehabilitate Stalinism, with a bust of the dictator being erected in Zaporizhya, elicit outrage. Only 141 Verkhovna Rada Deputies supported a draft resolution condemning the erection of the monument. While declaring the wish to unite the country, the Party of the Regions, together with their coalition partner – the Lytvyn Bloc and the Communist Party – are effectively dividing it, since nothing could be more divisive than such steps.

The same can be said about the “reworked” history textbooks. Already this year, the Ministry of Education has changed the textbooks for the fifth grade. Next academic year there is supposed to be a revised history textbook for the 11th grade.

The Ministry of Education has adjusted the history syllabus for the 5th grade and proposed the relevant changes to the textbook: “Introduction to Ukrainian History”: reference has been removed to the artificial nature of the Famine of 1932-1933, the repressions in Western Ukraine in 1939 after the Soviet Union occupied it; fragments of a text about the Heroes of Kruty (students who died defending Kyiv in 1918); the actions of the Ukrainian Resistance Army [UPA] during the Second World War, and the Orange Revolution. There are around 20 proposals for changes to the textbook with a significant number of these concerning the policy of the Russian Empire and USSR in Ukraine, and aimed at forming an unaggressive image of them.

There have been flagrant abuses of the right to privacy.Such abuses from the side of the Ministry of Internal Affairs are considered below. The President’s Administration has introduced illegal collection of personal information which is in flagrant breach of the Constitution and the recently passed Law on Personal Data Protection (which, incidentally, has very seriously flaws). The Deputy Head of the President’s Administration and the Head of the Central Department of Regional and Staffing Policy, S. Skubashevsky, sent a circular to the Head of the Crimean Council of Ministers and to the Heads of regional administrations in which they propose “in order to receive information regarding the socio-political, socio-economic situation in Ukraine’s regions” by 9 July 2010 to “prepare passports of the regions as of 1 July 2010 (following a fixed format) and send them by email. These passports should be updated and sent on a quarterly basis.

There are 11 sections of the passport with these including, as well as some about the population structure, socio-economic readings, social sphere, etc, the following:

6. Political parties, civic organizations, professional societies;

9. Results of the last elections;

10 Heads of the district, enterprises, institutions, organizations, well-known and influential people (those with impact on the political situation

11. Means of communication

In Section 6, as well as lists of professional societies, district and city branches of parties, civic organizations, they want the number of members, address, as well as full names, telephone, position and home address of their heads.

Section 9 wants the results of all elections from 2004, as well as information about factions and groups within councils, including personal data about the heads, information about their influence on the council and relations with the head of the council.

In Section 10 you need to give personal data about heads of enterprises, institutions, organizations and educational institutions of the area; heads of agricultural and farming businesses; council deputies, heads and deputy heads, and secretaries of rural councils, as well as so-called “influential individuals”. The data collected includes information about their party affiliation (political orientation) and who they supported at the presidential elections in 2010.

Section 11 wants detailed information about television and radio companies and the printed press set up in the region, including their sources of finance.

The collection of personal data is clearly being carried out to ensure control over political activity in the country and the advantage of the ruling party.

This same purpose is pursued by the “Standard agreement between co-founders of a media outlet and the editorial office regarding guarantees for the independence of editorial policy”. This contains the requirement for co-founders of the media outlet to “publicly declare their support for a political force at the elections, stating which specific political force, as well as the forms of such support”. Editors are required to provide written notification to the co-founders of membership of a party or civic organization.

This standard agreement between co-founders of a media outlet and the editorial office was drawn up on the instructions of the Cabinet of Ministers on 26 July 2010, supposedly to ensure the independence of editorial policy.

Both Ukrainian and international observers and experts who monitored the Local Elections gave very negative overall assessment. The organization and course of the 2010 Local Elections demonstrated a clear move by the regime backwards, towards disregard for democratic standards and freedoms. They consider these elections to have been the worst in the last five years. An overall assessment of the elections (from the adoption of the Law which significantly reduced rights, established particular preferences and restricted public control, to the process for determining the outcome) gives grounds for asserting that the 2010 Local Elections did not comply with the standards for free, honest, fair and transparent elections. the public had the possibility of observing but everything was done to prevent fully-fledged public control.

Plans for a radical review of the direction and content of educational reform announced by the Minister of Education end Science, Dmytro Tabachnyk, the opening of preparatory courses and the possibility of entrance exams to higher educational institutions along the old grounds mean an effective cancellation of independent external assessment, the loss of equal access to higher education and a restoration of the former scale of corruption in higher education. Serhiy Kvit, President of the National University of «Kyiv-Mohyla Academy», believes[4] that the policy of Dmytro Tabachnyk directed at authoritarian and centralized governmental control of higher education in Ukraine and the degradation of science and learning in the country more generally. The Ministry of Education and Science of Ukraine produced a Draft Law «On Higher Education» that, in fact, threaten to inhibit the normal development of institutions of higher education by not providing them with sufficient autonomy to make it possible for them to attain a level of international competitiveness. It is necessary to discard this ill-conceived Draft Law and to create a new Draft on other basic principles.

The Verkhovna Rada adopted a number of draft laws which seriously violate human rights (for example, Law on local elections, many articles of what do not meet universally accepted democratic norms and standards) and rejected concepts and draft laws aimed at protecting them, for example, Concept of reformation of judicial system, Concept of reformation of criminal justice, the progressive Criminal Procedure Code, etc.

The judicial reform proposed by the President, despite a considerable number of positive innovations, violates the Constitution and international standards for the right to a fair trial as well as contradicts to the interests of citizens. The following do not comply with the Constitution:

– The functions of the High Council of Justice have been broadened, in breach of Article 131 of the Constitution, to include appointing and dismissing the heads of courts, as well as examining complaints from judges who have been refused indefinite tenure.

– The Supreme Court, which in accordance with Article 125 of the Constitution has the status of highest court within the system of courts of general jurisdiction, is stripped of effective possibilities for standardizing case law in these courts. The law removes its right to pass the final ruling in a case and leaves it the right to examine cases only in the cases of divergent application of material law, not procedural law. And only when the application for a review is allowed by the relevant High Court whose ruling is appeal to the examination.

The following are not in line with international standards:

– The failure to stipulate objective criteria and a competition for transferring judges, including selection as high court judges.

– The retention of an inquisition-style (not adversarial) procedure for bringing proceedings against judges, under which a member of the High Qualifying Commission of Judges or High Council of Justice is at once investigator, prosecutor and judge in relation to that particular judge.

The following are not in the interests of citizens:

– The possibility of court examination of a case without the participation of a person who was not notified of the court hearing, for example, through the fault of the post office;

– Considerable reduction in time limits for lodging appeals or cassation appeals against a court ruling;

– Major reduction in time periods for examination of cases at each level to one or two months, and in some categories of cases to 20, 15 or even 5 days;

– Removal of the right to ask for a judge to be removed where the circumstances which form the grounds for this become known after the examination has begun.

After adoption of the Law «On the Judicial System and Status of Judges», citizens have receive a swift, but unfair justice system from dependent judges. For ensuring just court proceedings and true independence of judges it is necessary to return the Law to the Verkhovna Rada for new consideration.

It should be noted that the preventive safeguards in the checking of draft laws by the Ministry of Justice to see that they comply with case law of the European Court of Human Rights are effectively not working.

There have been repressive measures and violence against trade union activists, civil activists and human rights defenders. In the beginning 2010 the Krasnodonvuhyllya company[5] is destroying the Independent Miners’ Union because it refused to give its consent to a worsening in pay conditions in breach of legislation. On 14 September journalist and human rights defender, head of the Kherson Regional Branch of the Committee of Voters of Ukraine, member of the Board of the Ukrainian Helsinki Human Rights Union, Dementiy Bily, was beaten up by the security guards of Kherson’s Mayor, Volodymyr Saldo, who is standing for re-election as candidate from the Party of the Regions in October[6]. The list of cases where civil activists and human rights defenders are persecuted is getting longer and longer. Such events were in Kyiv, Kharkiv, Lviv, Donetsk, Vinnitsa, Zaporizhya, Kherson, the Crimea and other cities. The number of such cases over the second half of 2010 is far in excess of the total number of similar incidents during the previous five years. On 27 October UHHRU distributed an open letter demanding the authorities to stop persecution of human rights activists. In this letter UHHRU also calls on the international community, international organizations and foreign embassies to influence Ukraine’s policy to stop persecution of human rights activists for their activities as well as on the European Union and EU countries to more actively apply the Guiding Principles of the EU on the protection of human rights[7] and to draw up a plan for inculcating these in Ukraine.

Administrative pressure by the authorities has increased which is evidenced by the significant increase in complaints against arbitrary behavior by tax and other regulatory bodies. In the second half of 2010 relations between small business and authorities moved into an open confrontation in connection with the preparation and adoption of the draft of the Tax Code. These events are considered more detailed below.

We would note that President Yanukovych has on a number of occasions reacted to cases of human rights abuse in his speeches, asserting that “criticism from opponents is a vital component of democratic society”, that “you mustn’t save on human rights” and so forth. However one has the impression that these statements are a ritual and nobody plans to follow such recommendations.

We are also forced to note that there is almost no reaction from the authorities and bodies of local self-government to appeals from the public, protests against unlawful actions, statements regarding violations of human rights with these simply being ignored. At the same time, the number of protests is on the rise. Over the first 6 months of 2010 the number of peaceful public gatherings rose by 30%, with the number exceeding that for all of 2009. Inthesecond half of 2010 it was obviously much more than the first.The new regime must therefore grasp that pressure through means of force on society will only acerbate conflicts. However, the government, on the contrary, has resorted to outright political persecution in the second half of 2010. This issue is considered below.


[1] Prepared by Yevhen Zakharov, Co-Chair of KHPG and Member of UHHRU Board.

[2] Approved by the Decree of the President of Ukraine from May, 10, 2006, No. 361/2006.

[3] Approved by Presidential Decree number 311/2008 of April 8, 2008 "On Decision of the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine of February 15, 2008 "On reforming the criminal justice system and law enforcement".


[5] Coal mining – translator’s note.

[6] See more detailed description of this incident:



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