Ukrainian law

Legal news in Ukraine: new composition of Ukrainian government, people’s deputies dismissed Attorney General, parliament's law enforcement committee will consider new bills

07.03.2020 / 09:30
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Legal news in Ukraine: new composition of Ukrainian government, people’s deputies dismissed Attorney General, parliament's law enforcement committee will consider new bills

The Verkhovna Rada approved the new composition of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine

On March 4, 2020, the Verkhovna Rada dismissed Prime Minister of Ukraine Oleksii Honcharuk and appointed Denys Shmyhal as head of the new government.

On the same day, a new Cabinet of Ministers was approved. Justice Minister Denys Maliuska, Minister of Internal Affairs of Ukraine Arsen Avakov, Minister of Infrastructure Vladyslav Krylii, and Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Digital Transformation of Ukraine Mykhailo Fedorov have retained their posts.

In addition, Former Deputy Prime Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic Integration Dmytro Kuleba became Foreign Minister. Former Foreign Ministry chief Vadym Prystaiko received Kuleba’s post.

New faces in the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine:

Vice Prime Minister - Minister for Reintegration of Temporarily Occupied Territories – Oleksii Rieznikov;

Minister of cabinet of minister Oleh Nemchinov;

Minister for Community and Territorial Development Oleksii Chernyshov;

Minister of Finance Ihor Umanskyi;

Health Minister Illia Yemets;

Youth and Sports Minister Vadym Huttsait;

Minister for Veterans Affairs Serhii Bessarab;

Social Policy Minister Maryna Lazebna;

Defense Minister Andrii Taran.

Currently, the positions of the heads of the Ministry of Economic Development and Agriculture, the Ministry of the Environment, the Ministry of Education and Science and the Ministry of Culture are vacant.

People’s deputies dismissed the Attorney General

On March 5, 2020, the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine, at an extraordinary plenary session, expressed its distrust of the Prosecutor General of Ukraine Ruslan Riaboshapka, which resulted in his resignation.

An extraordinary meeting was called at the request of 152 people’s deputies – in accordance with part eight of Article 19 of the Regulation of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine.

The deputies said that for more than six months in office Riaboshapka did not show any activity in the investigation of the unlawful activities of senior government officials, during his cadence there was not a resonant pre-trial investigation.

Also, investigations into the cases of top officials have not been completed and no indictments have been issued in their cases by the courts.

They mentioned, in particular, the cases of former National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine secretary Oleh Hladkovskyi, Lviv mayor Andrii Sadovyi, businessman Vadym Alperin and criminal investigation into criminal activity of «Burisma» subsidiaries in Ukraine.

«Such a state of affairs testifies to the unwillingness, impossibility or inability of the Attorney General to ensure the fulfillment of the tasks set by law before the prosecuting authorities regarding the protection of the rights and freedoms of the person, society and the state», – summed up the people’s deputies.

The day before, Riaboshapka dismissed the allegations, noting that a separate anti-corruption infrastructure was created in Ukraine to investigate top corruption: the National Anti-Corruption Bureau, the Specialized Anti-corruption Prosecutor's Office and the Anti-Corruption Court. He noted that the Attorney General’s Office had no influence on these anti-corruption bodies.

It should be recalled that the Prosecutor General of Ukraine is appointed to the post and dismissed by the President of Ukraine with the consent of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine. At present, the new candidate for the vacant position has not been submitted by the President.

A bill on the responsibility of law enforcement authorities for failure to comply with court decisions is registered

On February 24, 2020 the Draft Law «On Amendments to the Criminal Code of Ukraine on Establishing the Responsibility of Law Enforcement Workers for Non-Enforcement of Judgments» was registered in the Verkhovna Rada.

The authors of the bill note that one of the most pressing problems of domestic criminal justice is the actual enforcement of judgments, the obligation and inevitability of which is one of the main and important components on which both the authority of the entire judicial power in Ukraine and the rule of law are based.

The explanatory note states: «Despite the establishment of criminal liability for evading a court decision, in practice the most violations of this norm of the Criminal Code of Ukraine are committed by persons who must ensure law and order - law enforcement officers (prosecutors, heads of pre-trial investigation bodies, investigators)».

Therefore, the draft law proposes to supplement the Criminal Code of Ukraine with Article 382-1, which establishes the criminal liability of law enforcement officials for failure to comply with court decisions. For such a violation, it is proposed to punish with imprisonment for a term of 5 to 8 years with the deprivation of the right to occupy certain positions for a period of up to 3 years.

Public abuse of military personnel will be punished - the bill

On February 21, 2020 a draft law «On Amendments to Article 338 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine» was registered in the Verkhovna Rada.

The purpose of the bill is to increase responsibility for insulting military personnel. «Today, insults towards the military personnel again sound. This is unacceptable. No one has the right to insult the people who protect us, our land, our state – the military personnel of the Armed Forces of Ukraine», the explanatory note says.

It is proposed to amend article 338 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine, which stipulates that public abuse of members of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, military uniforms or insignia of servicemen, is punishable by a fine of up to 50 non-taxable minimum incomes of citizens or community service for a period of 60 to 240 hours.

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