Human rights activists prepare roadmap of bills to protect rights of conflict-related victims

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Experts of the Coalition of Organizations for Protection of Rights and Freedoms of Victims of Armed Conflict prepared the roadmap of bills related to the protection of conflict-related victims and submitted these proposals to MPs.

According to human rights activists, there are still many issues related to armed aggression that the Government should resolve at the legislative level.

Together with our colleagues, we analyzed the bill initiatives on the protection of the rights of victims of the armed conflict in Ukraine. We have set forth our recommendations on these documents in the form of a roadmap to make it easier for MPs to find out which bills need to be approved and which initiatives must be rejected. We hope that this roadmap will be useful for MPs,” explained Aliona Luniova, Advocacy Manager at ZMINA Human Rights Centre.

The road map is presented in the form of traffic lights. The bills, which the coalition representatives fully support and advocate for their speedy adoption, are in the “green zone”.

Among such “green” bills there is Bill No. 5718 which stipulates protection and social support for children affected by the armed conflict. The bill provides for benefits, psychological, and medical rehabilitation, payments for children affected by hostilities in eastern Ukraine, and stipulates an opportunity to obtain status and benefits for children affected by the occupation of Crimea.

The bills in the “yellow zone” need to be finalized. There is also a “red zone”: these bills pose significant risks and dangers and, according to experts, must be rejected by the relevant committees and/or MPs in the session hall.

For example, human rights activists recommend rejecting Bill No. 5822 which creates a legal basis for the automatic loss of Ukrainian citizenship in case of voluntary acquisition of citizenship of the aggressor state. Experts explain that, although the bill applies to all citizens of Ukraine, it will inflict the greatest harm to residents of the temporarily occupied territories. The bill stipulates that the automatic acquisition of Russian citizenship by citizens of Ukraine residing in the temporarily occupied territory is not recognized by Ukraine and is not a ground for loss of Ukrainian citizenship. At the same time, Russia is taking all possible steps to sever ties between Ukraine and the population of the occupied territories. Part of such a policy is the imposition of Russian citizenship, and therefore the fact of its voluntary acquisition by Ukrainian citizens living under the occupation is questionable. According to experts, this bill does not help restore ties with the occupied territories and deprives the citizens of Ukraine of protection by their state.

See the road map here.

Background. The Coalition members are: ZMINA Human Rights Centre, NGO “Donbas SOS”, NGO “Crimea SOS”, Charity Foundation “Right to Protection”, Charity Foundation “Vostok-SOS”, NGO “Civil Holding “GROUP OF INFLUENCE”, Charity Foundation “Stabilization Support Services”, Crimean Human Rights Group.