The NGOs in their letter of 17 January 2014 condemn in the strongest terms the adoption by the Ukrainian parliament on 16 January 2014 of the law Nr 3879 introducing multiple restrictions on the rights to freedom of expression and assembly, as well as basic rights to associate and to the space of civil society in general, including by introducing “foreign agent” regulations inspired from legislation from the Russian Federation.
They call upon President Viktor Yanukovych to veto the law Nr 3879, introducing multiple restrictions on the rights to freedom of expression and assembly, as well as basic rights to associate and to the space of civil society in general, including by introducing “foreign agent” regulations.
The NGOs further call upon President Viktor Yanukovych to:
- Take concrete measures aiming at stopping the use of force by police to disperse protestors, even if they occupy governmental buildings, and to publicly acknowledge the right of anybody to peacefully protest and the duty of the State security forces to protect peaceful protestors;
- Immediately and unconditionally drop all charges against peaceful protestors and journalists, release and compensate all of them;
- Ensure that human rights NGOs and journalists are able to monitor assemblies and report on police violence without fearing retaliation, and that human rights defenders and activists are not charged for participating in peaceful protests.
- Joint HRHN letter on restrictive law (17 January 2014)
- The Berkut riot police used excessive force against peaceful protesters
- Peaceful protests in Kiev meet violent police reaction
- Expresses concern over beatings of journalists
- Ane Tusvik Bonde
Regional Manager, Eastern Europe and Caucaus
Mob: +47 99 74 39 07
Languages: Norwegian, English, Russian
- Florian Irminger
Head of Advocacy and HRHF Geneva Office
Tel: +41 22 33 22 554
Mob: +41 79 751 80 42
Languages: English, French, German
- Mayka Brevik
Mob: +47 97 03 08 53
Languages: Norwegian, English
More about the law: Complete restriction to fundamental rights in Ukraine
The Ukrainian parliament adopted a law violating most fundamental rights to freedom of expression and assembly, as well as basic rights to associate and work for a non-governmental organisation, including the right to be a human rights defender.
“The law adopted by the parliament does not only contain some restrictions, it is a complete restriction to fundamental rights, including the most basic right to express critical opinions, and it gives green light to authorities to use violence and oppress civil society,” says Ane Tusvik Bonde, Human Rights House Foundation’s Regional Manager for Eastern Europe and Caucasus.
For comments on the situation in Ukraine: