The law ‘on the reintegration of Donbass’ was adopted: what to wait?

On January 18 Ukrainian Parliament has adopted in general the draft ‘on the specifics of the state policy to ensure the state sovereignty of Ukraine over the temporarily occupied territories in the Donetsk and Luhansk regions’ (7163).

Meanwhile, the summary text already adopted document hasn’t been promulgated yet and it’s impossible to draw final conclusions. The last step is left – the signing by the President of Ukraine Peter Poroshenko.

Human rights advocates are telling about risks, which the law adoption could bring. Their opinions as well as the information about a number of important aspects of a bill are in an article of

The recognition of an occupation, creation of Union Headquarter, limited passing into ‘security zones’

It’s told in an article 1 of the draft law, prepared to the second reading, that parts of the territory of Ukraine, in which limits armed formations of the Russian Federation and occupation administration of the Russian Federation has established and carried out effective control are recognized as temporary occupied areas in Donetsk and Luhansk Provinces.

It’s noted that ‘temporary occupation of Ukraine areas by Russian Federation, defined in part 1 of Article 1 of this Law, regardless of its duration, is illegal and doesn’t create for the Russian Federation any territorial rights’.

Persons, taken part in an armed aggression of Russian Federation or attracted to participation in the occupation administration of Russian Federation have a criminal responsibility for actions, violating legislation of Ukraine and norms of the International Humanitarian Law.

It’s also told in the document that ‘in the security zones adjacent to the combat area, in order to implement measures to ensure national security and defense, to repel and deter armed aggression of the Russian Federation, a special procedure is in place in Donetsk and Luhansk regions that provides for the provision to the security and defense authorities and other state bodies of Ukraine special powers’.

The Commander of the Union forces, taking into account the security of the situation, has the right to restrict the entry of persons into the temporarily occupied territories of Donetsk and Luhansk regions and the departure of persons from such territories.

Staying in the area of implementing measures to ensure national security and defense, repelling and deterring the armed aggression of the Russian Federation in Donetsk and Luhansk regions of persons not involved in such events is allowed with the permission of the Commander of the Union forces.

In order to provide vital interests of society and the state in repelling armed aggression in the security zones adjacent to the hostility areas, servicemen, law enforcement officials and persons involved in the implementation of measures to ensure national security and defense, repelling and restraining the armed aggression of the Russian Federation in Donetsk and Luhansk regions, in accordance with the Constitution and legislation of Ukraine have a right:

  1. To use, in case of emergency, weapons and special means to persons who have committed or are committing offenses or other actions that impede the fulfillment of the legitimate demands of persons involved in carrying out measures to ensure national security and defense, repelling and containing the armed aggression of the Russian Federation in the Donetsk and Luhansk regions, or actions related to an unauthorized attempt to enter the area of implementation of specified activities;
  2. To detain and deliver persons, appointed in paragraph 1 of this article, to the bodies of the National Police of Ukraine;
  3. To check identity documents of citizens and officials and in case of absence of them – to detain them for identification;
  4. Еo carry out a personal search of citizens, inspection of things, with them, vehicles and things that they carry;
  5. temporarily restrict or prohibit the movement of vehicles and pedestrians on the streets and roads, don’t allow vehicles, citizens to separate parts of the terrain and objects, remove citizens from certain parts of the terrain and objects, tow vehicles;
  6. enter (penetrate into) residential and other premises, land plots owned by citizens, to carry out measures to ensure national security and defense, to repel and deter armed aggression of the Russian Federation in Donetsk and Luhansk regions, to the territory and premises of enterprises, institutions and organizations, to check vehicles;
  7. To use for communication purposes communication means and vehicles, including special ones, belonging to citizens (with their consent), enterprises, institutions and organizations, except vehicles of diplomatic, consular and other representations of foreign states and international organizations.

Human rights advocates: ‘Political compromise should be sought with citizens’

An expert of the ‘Center of the Information about Human Rights’ Alyona Lunova, who earlier had analyzed the text of a draft, has noted in the commentary to, that the ‘most embarrassing that the deputies didn’t read what they voted for’.

She has commented the recognition of the Russian Federation an occupant and aggressor.

‘Really the recognition of Russia an aggressor in ranks of the national legislation of Ukraine won’t bring any circumstances for Russia. They will come only if there is a decision of any international authority on this issue. Such a fact that we put some responsibility on the Russian Federation it’s only political moments. Civils had been talking about it. This means that we don’t mind political moments, but let’s vote then only for them and don’t mix everything in one clod. It turns, we say that Russia is an aggressor and say at the same moment, oh, let’s allow top-brassers to fire on people, who penetrate into this ‘security zone’ without without proper permission. It’s principally different things’, the human rights advocate accented.

Also she paid an attention that ‘if it’s necessary, for example, the European Court may establish the fact that the Russian Federation has exercised effective control over part of the territory of Ukraine – and it’s independently from that we have ATO, a war or measures to ensure national security and defense. The only is important that the part of the territory of Ukraine is under its jurisdiction due to the fact that there are illegal armed groups, which, as it is proved by international instances, are subordinate to the Russian Federation’.

‘The urgency of this bill is far-fetched. It’s important that the draft on Crimea will be spreaded on the occupied areas of Luhansk and Donetsk regions without reservation. And it’s very dangerous, because appointed bill doesn’t regulate those issues that arise in the east of the country. One more is important that opinion that ATO may not stop was sounded. So, we will have two operations in the east: one of them will be under commanding of the Anti-terrorist Center, the second – under the General HQ and there will two centers, which will give permissions. It’s not clear how they will share proxies between each other’, Alyona Lunova emphasized.

She added that in time of voting for the draft MPs couldn’t come to a prompt and informed decision, because accusations, addressed to opponents of the adoption of a document that they’re ‘not patriots’, ‘occupant collaborators’ or ‘Kremlin’s hand’, sounded on the sidelines and in the hall’.

We would remind that on January 15 the press-conference ‘Reintegration or isolation of Donbass? Risks of a draft law No. 7163’. The representative of the Office of the Verkhovna Rada Commissioner for Human Rights Mikhail Chaplyga, as well as the Executive Director of the Vostok-SOS Charity Fund, Aleksandra Dvoretska expressed their opinions about a bill.

‘They’re looking for a political compromise in the hall, in parliament, but it must be found with citizens, civil community and Constitution’, human rights advocate accented.

According to his words, the first variant of a document, which was submitted by the President, wasn’t ideal, but didn’t contain such obvious contradictions with the Constitution’.

Mikhail Chaplyga also paid an attention that such a statement as Union HQ is being introduced in the bill.

‘This HQ can consist of Armed Forces of Ukraine too. In fact, the martial law is introduced in a peaceful time, but without a procedure, which is defined in the Constitution and relevant laws. So, the property of firms, some enterprises, entrepreneurs, could be used with an aim to protect state interests and all of this not envisaged by the Constitution’, civil told.

Aleksandra Dvoretska noted that anxiety causes such a quote of a draft ‘without special permission special means can be applied to people, transport, housing and property can be inspected, access to state enterprises, authorities’. Moreover, ‘such unlimited powers are frightened also by the fact that there is no effective mechanism to control this if violations are committed here and now’.

Otherwise, on January 18, Dvoretska gave a comment on her social media page about adoption of a draft. In particular, she asks herself what gives in practice the recognition of Russia as an aggressor country, as well as the date of the beginning of the occupation of Ukrainian territories.

‘These things don’t change a life of people, living on the both sides from the Line of Contact, at all. They don’t help to prove Russia’s crimes. But some norms of voted text will change the life of people. And if violations will be from the side of military or law enforcements nobody won’t protect people. Comment this, please, too. I’m keeping silence about Constitution. It turns that to change President’s full powers is possible now by patriotic bills. It will be dangerous in future’.


Marina Kuraptseva for

Погода в Киеве