Venice Commission reviews constitutional amendments on the judiciary in Ukraine

Strasbourg 26/10/2015
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Venice Commission reviews constitutional amendments on the judiciary in Ukraine

The Council of Europe’s constitutional experts (the European Commission for Democracy through Law, also known as "the Venice Commission"), praises steps taken by Ukraine to attain an independent judiciary, including removing the power of the President to dismiss judges, and reforming the Public Prosecutor’s Office.

At the same time, the Commission suggests further amendments, including granting power to the High Council of Justice to decide not only on dismissals, but also on transfers and promotions of judges. In its opinion (on the proposed amendments to the constitution of Ukraine regarding the judiciary as approved by the constitutional commission on 4 September 2015), the Venice Commission rejects the dismissal of all sitting judges in Ukraine but accepts that qualifications and integrity of the judges will be checked. It recommends that the violation of the obligation to submit correct asset declarations justifying the property of a judge will be a ground for dismissal. It recommends abolishing the high specialised courts while keeping the administrative courts as an autonomous system.

The opinion and recommendations of the Venice Commission were welcomed and accepted by all Ukrainian representatives present in Venice.

Final adopted versions of these and other texts, according to the plenary session agenda, will be made available on the Venice Commission website.

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