HFHR appeal before the EU-Ukraine Summit
On 19 December, the EU-Ukraine Summit was held in Kiev, marking the conclusion of negotiations on the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement. On this occasion, the HFHR issued an open letter to raise the issue of the recent decrease in the level of human rights protection in the Ukraine.
The Ukraine has been a member of the Council of Europe since 1995. In 1997 the country ratified the European Convention on Human Rights. As such, the Ukraine is obliged to uphold the European standards of human rights protection. Further, the obligation to introduce reforms to strengthen the respect of human rights was included in the EU-Ukraine Association Agenda signed in 2009.
However, in the last few months new laws were proposed in the Ukraine which may adversely affect the human rights safeguards under Ukraine’s international obligations. The new draft legislation interferes in particular with such areas as the freedom of expression, assembly and protection of sexual minorities.
The appeal took notice of the course of the trial of Yulia Tymoshenko and attempts to introduce legislation negatively affecting the rights of Ukrainian LGBTs and the freedom of speech in this country.
The open letter was drafted as part of the Europe of Human Rights programme.