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Council of Europe’s Anti-racism Commission says Ukraine has not implemented its priority recommendations

STRASBOURG 02 JUNE 2020
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Council of Europe’s Anti-racism Commission says Ukraine has not implemented its priority recommendations

The European Commission against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI) today published conclusions on the implementation of two priority recommendations made to Ukraine in 2017.

Firstly, the ECRI strongly recommended to include sexual orientation and gender identity as grounds into the Criminal Code and have them considered as aggravating circumstances. In this regard ECRI notes that under the Criminal Code there was no punishment of incitement to hatred or violence motivated by homo/transphobia. Besides, there is no reference to the grounds of sexual orientation and gender identity under the aggravated forms of certain offences or in the Article of the Criminal Code on circumstances aggravating punishment. ECRI notes only one amendment to the Criminal Code that entered into force in 2019 - the inclusion of the ground of “sexual belonging”. While the inclusion of gender among circumstances aggravating punishment is welcomed, it does not extend to sexual orientation or gender identity, and therefore does not respond to the recommendation, ECRI notes. It concludes that its recommendation has not been implemented. 

Secondly, the ECRI recommended waiving court fees in cases of Roma seeking to prove their identity for the purpose of obtaining personal identification documents. The authorities informed ECRI that the Law on Court Fees 2012 provides for the postponement of payment of court fees, reduction of their amount or exemption from payment. ECRI understands, however, that the legislation is of little use to Roma seeking to prove their identity, since – paradoxically – there is a requirement to prove inability to pay the fees by providing documentary evidence to the court. In this context, ECRI has found no indication of the application of this provision in such cases. It therefore concludes that its recommendation has not been implemented, as all gathered information demonstrates that no changes have occurred in this respect.

The conclusions are based on the response from the Government and information gathered from other sources. They concern only the priority recommendations and do not aim at providing a comprehensive analysis of all developments in the fight against racism and intolerance in Ukraine.

The European Commission against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI) is a unique human rights monitoring body which specialises in questions relating to the fight against racism, discrimination (on grounds of “race”, ethnic/national origin, colour, citizenship, religion, language, sexual orientation and gender identity), xenophobia, antisemitism and intolerance in Europe; it prepares reports and issues recommendations to member States.


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