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In its opinion on the draft law on anti-corruption courts in Ukraine adopted today, the European Commission for Democracy through Law (the “Venice Commission”) said that many of the provisions of the draft law provide a good basis for the establishment of a high specialised anti-corruption court, but made several recommendations to reduce the risk that it could be considered unconstitutional. In order to dispel any doubts about the constitutionality of the legislative procedure, the Venice Commission invites the President of Ukraine to promptly submit his own draft law on anti-corruption courts – which should be based on the Venice Commission’s recommendations. The current draft law (Draft Law No. 6011) thus needs to be withdrawn.
The Venice Commission stresses that corruption is one of Ukraine’s major problems, parts of the judiciary itself have for many years been considered as weak, politicised and corrupt, and its ongoing reform – which is promising and to be strongly supported – will take several years to complete. The only way forward in the fight against high-level corruption in Ukraine is the prompt establishment of a high specialised anti-corruption court (HACC), as foreseen in the Law “On the Judicial System and the Status of Judges”, whose judges are selected in a transparent procedure with international involvement, the Venice Commission said.