Diplomatic briefing "Inside Ukraine"

The analysis “Inside Ukraine” was traditionally represented to the diplomatic corps. Recent developments affected directly the content of “Public policies”: on April 13, 2017 officials of the Prosecutor's Office of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea (ARC) and the Security Service of Ukraine (SSU) searched premises of the Ukrainian think-tank ICPS in order to find “The idea for resolving the conflict in Donbas”. Search of the think-tank caused an outcry by Ukrainian civil society and human rights activists. “This loud event may be an alarming signal of changing Ukrainian government policy towards peaceful settlement, respect for democratic norms and fundamental freedoms, as well as its attitude on civil society in general”, - Vasyl Filipchuk noted. Vasyl Povoroznyk, summing up the results of work of the Groysman government in 2016, stressed that the main developments of the government, according to the report, include restoring macroeconomic growth. Generally, the first year of the Groysman government neither brought serious disappointments, nor demonstrated specific achievements in implementing reforms. The strategic priorities of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine in 2016 were the following: macroeconomic stabilization; creating favorable conditions for business development;  ensuring rule of law and combating corruption;  improving the quality of public administration and public services; restoration of state and citizens’ security. According to the report, the government achieved positive results in each strategic area identified in the plan of work. However, most of these achievements the government have either formal or dual character. Anatoliy Oktysyuk presented possible scenarios in political competition, in particular several options for political developments in the country: reshaping of the coalition and government structures, freezing of the current situation until 2019 or early parliamentary elections in autumn 2017....

ICPS Press
27.04.2017

The statement on the inadmissibility of persecution for expressing an expert opinion

                                                To the President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko To the Prosecutor General of Ukraine Yuriy Lutsenko To the Prosecutor of Autonomous Republic of Crimea Giunduz Mamedov                                                On April 13, the office of the International Centre for Policy Studies (ICPS) in Kyiv was searched as part of the case on the so-called “peaceful plan of MP Artemenko” by the officials of the Prosecutor's Office of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea. People’s Deputy Andriy Artemenko is accused of high treason under the Article 111 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine. He is charged with the assistance to Russia in conducting subversive activities against Ukraine that expressed in the appeals to let Crimea in long-term lease to the Russian Federation and thereby to legitimize temporary occupation. In the basis of the “peaceful plan” of MP Artemenko, as it stated in a court order for search conduction, there is a plan“Ideas for the conflict settlement in Donbas” authored by Vasyl Filipchuk. Not sharing the views of MP Artemenko on “peaceful settlement” ways, we state the illegality of accusations of high treason for the presentation of any ideas, including ideas on peaceful settlement. We are outraged by the search in the analytical center ICPS within the investigation on the case of high treason. These actions of the state are in violation of Article 34 of the Constitution of Ukraine, Article 19 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, Article 10 of the European Convention on Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, and also contravene the practices of the European Court of Human Rights (Zana v. Turkey (1997), Lingens v. Austria (1986), § 40; Barfod v. Denmark (1989), Wille v. Liechtenstein (1999) etc.). The search in ICPS is not limited to the violations of the Constitution of Ukraine and international agreements. We qualify the following actions of the state as the offensive against key freedom – expression of views - as an attempt to monopolize the market of ideas and to enforce a state doctrine to the society as the only possible under the pain of prosecution of those who offer other approaches, in especially serious crimes – high treason. Disproportionate state interference in the activities of think tanks is purely obscurantist attempt to establish a monopoly on the truth. ICPS activities by their nature are research and scientific ones. Ukraine declares its desire to become a fully legitimate member of the EU but violates a fundamental principle of the European Union, enshrined in Article 13 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union (2000), according to which, the arts and scientific research shall be free of constraint. Instead, it is the doctrine of "Russkiy mir" which can be characterized by the state monopoly on the truth, restrictions on freedom of expression, persecution for beliefs. Our war with Russia is primarily a war of values. These actions of the state are the value-based defeat, surrender of public interest and “high treason” in the long run. We cannot fight against “Russkiy mir” by means of “Russkiy mir”. We demand to stop the persecution of the think tank ICPS and immediately return everything that was seized during the search. We consider this incident as a manifestation of general trends on violating the balance between national security and human rights for the benefit of national security by the Security Service of Ukraine and prosecuting authorities. And we want to remind once again that a political regime which violates human rights is doomed to failure. Arkadiy Bushchenko, Executive Director of the Ukrainian Helsinki Human Rights Union Yevhen Zakharov, Director of the Kharkiv Human Rights Group...

ICPS Press
18.04.2017

ICPS OFFICIAL STATEMENT

On April 13, 2017 the office of the International Center for Policy Studies was searched. At about 16.00 unknown persons who introduce themselves as investigators of the prosecutor's office of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the officials of the Security Service of Ukraine entered the office with the aim to hand suspicion to Vasyl Filipchuk and to carry out the search in the office. For more than 5 hours, employees were limited in movement and forbidden to use any means of communication. Physical violence was committed against Vasyl Filipchuk which was fixed by respective photo evidence. The entrance to the office space was blocked, investigators refused to pass defenders, lawyers, police and even emergency doctors. According to the investigators, the search was made within the criminal case of “Artemenko”as they consider that ICPS helped the People`s Deputy to elaborate “peaceful plan” of the conflict settlement. WE STRESS that neither ICPS nor experts have been involved in such elaboration of “peaceful plan” or had any personal contacts with the People`s Deputy Andriy Artemenko. ICPS is working for a long time on finding possible ways of peaceful settlement in Eastern Ukraine with the support of the International Renaissance Foundation. All activities within the project “Modelling of the Minsk agreements implementation and support of strategic advisors to the Ministry of Temporary Occupied Territories and IDPs” were PUBLIC, and analytical materials are in open access on the official website of the Center. Ukrainian MPs and the Deputy Minister of Temporarily Occupied Territories and IDPs Georgiy Tuka were involved in pubic consultations. ICPS has always maintained and continues maintaining state position to preserve the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Ukraine! ICPS continues current project activities and is committed to its obligations in cooperation with its partners. We consider such actions as unprecedented pressure on civil society and disgrace of judicial system in Ukraine. We call on colleagues from the civil sector, representatives of diplomatic corps and entire international community todemand that persecution of independent analytical centers must be stopped!  ...

ICPS Press
14.04.2017

Constitutional reform: how to reach the new social contract?

During 2016-2017 within the project “The use of world expert experience and public consultations in the process of amending the Constitution of Ukraine” ICPS conducted 213 educational events throughout Ukraine, during which pupils and students had the opportunity to learn about the essence of the constitutional process and the appropriate role of citizens in it. “One problem is the secrecy of the new developing process of constitutional provisions when important decisions are adopted behind closed doors. We want to stop this practice in order to society felt their involvement in the country changes. For this purpose throughout the country we held lessons and lectures on “The Essence of the Constitution and its role in daily life”, - legal expert Veronika Kharuk said. Also, ICPS experts have developed brochures on “Participation of citizens in the constitutional process” which were disseminated in all regions of Ukraine. ICPS regional coordinator in Zhytomyr Zhanna Solovyova noted that in close cooperation with the local authorities they managed to organize a large number of lectures and interest of the audience continues even after project completion. It was estimated that within the framework of the project more than 10,000 students were covered. In his turn, an expert in constitutional law Gennadiy Druzenko noted that the social state norms, which are incorporated in the Constitution, are not actually performed in real conditions. “Free education and medicine – are norms that would be provided by state, but in fact it is only declarative. It is important to have comprehensible rules of the Constitution for people “, - Druzenko said....

ICPS Press
12.04.2017