AS (2012) CR 08
2012 ORDINARY SESSION
Thursday 26 January 2012 at 3.30 p.m.
The functioning of democratic institutions in Ukraine
The following text was submitted for inclusion in the official report by a member who was present in the Chamber but was prevented by lack of time from delivering it.
Mr PYLYPENKO (Ukraine) — In the conclusion of Opinion No.190 of September 1995, on the “Application by Ukraine for membership of the Council of Europe” as well as in numerous recommendations and resolutions, the duties and obligations of Ukraine, the need for a new criminal procedural code for Ukraine have repeatedly been emphasised.
As you know, in 2010 here, at the plenary session, a public promise was given by the President of Ukraine, Viktor Yanukovych that soon Ukraine would be able to report to the European community on the reform of the criminal process. That very year, a working group on that issue was established by the head of the country to confirm the seriousness of the intention to reform the criminal justice. The group developed a new highly qualified model of the criminal procedural code for Ukraine. The positive point was that, before presenting the entire draft code to the head of the country, it had been sent for examination to the Directorate General of Human Rights.
I am delighted to announce that up to 95% of the recommendations and comments from European experts have been taken into consideration in the draft of the new criminal procedural code.
The draft is aimed at: improving the regulation of criminal justice; bringing European values and principles to it; making strict adherence to human rights in the key idea of the whole criminal process; providing real but not declared equal procedural opportunities for the parties to criminal proceedings; and at affirming the adversary process.
The draft of the criminal procedural code allows us to find a fair balance between the interests of the State and the person brought to trial, as on the one hand it provides advanced tools for crime prevention and increases the efficiency of the criminal justice and on the other hand it contributes to the guarantees consolidating human rights and gives it significant opportunities to protect their rights freedoms and interests.
The main innovations of criminal proceedings under the new Criminal Procedural Code are the following: first, provision of procedural equality and adversary in criminal proceedings, improvement of rights of suspects and defendants and other participants in criminal proceedings; secondly, improving the general principles of pre-trial investigation and expansion of the judicial review at this stage; thirdly, improvement of the court proceedings and abridgement of terms of the criminal proceedings; fourthly, the introduction of specific types of proceedings to ensure the effective and expeditious consideration of criminal proceedings.
On 12 January this year, the President of Ukraine submitted the draft code to parliament, defining it as an urgent matter. The next day, the legislative body of our country, realising the importance and need for the reform of criminal justice, included the draft code in its agenda. At the next plenary meeting, which will be held in a few weeks, Parliament will consider the draft code.
However, the reform of criminal justice does not end with adoption of the criminal procedural code. Soon the President of Ukraine will introduce the new version of the law of Ukraine “On Bar Association” and the law of Ukraine “On Prosecution” to the parliament. These laws will definitely reform the above-mentioned legal institutions according to the European standards.