More than 50 human rights organizations opposed the the Law Draft on Advocacy 9055

Representatives of human rights organizations that are part of the largest Ukrainian associations of human rights activists call on the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine (Ukrainian Parliament) to stop the practice of non-transparent support for the presidential bill “On advocacy and advocacy activities”, as well as to properly refine this document and obtain the conclusion of the Venice Commission.

This is stated in a joint letter to the Chairman of the Verkhovna Rada Andriy Parubii signed by the Executive Director of the Ukrainian Helsinki Human Rights Union (UHHRU) Oleksandr Pavlichenko, the director of the Kharkiv Human Rights Protection Group (KhPG) Yevhen Zakharov, as well as the chairman of the Board and executive director of the Legal Development Network (LDN) Natalia Bimbirayte and Yevgen Poltenko.

“Three months have passed since the submission of a bill to the Rada by the President of Ukraine, but the tendencies in Ukrainian realities as for making non-transparent decisions are irresistible,” the letter reads.

Human rights activists point out that the draft law No. 9055 introduced by the President on September 6 has already caused ambiguous reactions in the lawyer community and among human rights activists as the text of the draft entails risks for the performance of professional duties by Ukrainian lawyers, protection of people and the implementation of the principles of the rule of law.

“Without consideration of the decision taken by the Main Research and Expert Board of the Verkhovna Rada, which recommends returning the bill on the results of the first reading to the subject of legislative initiative for revision, the document is planned to be put on the agenda of the plenary session of the Verkhovna Rada” , – the letter reads.

Human rights activists express concern about the possibility of adopting the draft in the current version and suggest that they make an open public discussion of the document, as well as consider alternative proposals put forward by the human rights community. In addition, human rights defenders demand the forwarding of presidential and alternative bills “On advocacy and advocacy activities” to the European Commission for Democracy through Law (Venice Commission) to conduct due examination.

“The implementation of advocacy reform today is a powerful tool for strengthening the guarantees of providing high-quality and qualified assistance to the client, and lawyers together with human rights defenders help protect the rights and freedoms of Ukrainian citizens and ensure equality and justice in the state,” human rights activists appeal to the Verkhovna Rada leadership.

UHHRU, KhPG, and LDN networks  include 52 human rights organizations.


From left to right: Natalia Bimbirayte, Head of the LDN Board; Oleksandr Pavlichenko, Executive Director of the Ukrainian Helsinki Human Rights Union; Antonina Bondarenko, Deputy Head  of the Secratariat of the Ukrainian Natiional Bar Association.


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