The CCU responds to the Venice Commission's opinion / Photo from UNIAN, by Volodymyr Hontar

The Constitutional Court of Ukraine (CCU) says it treats recommendations by the European Commission for Democracy through Law (Venice Commission) "with great respect."

This is announced in a statement by the CCU in response to the promulgated urgent conclusion of the Venice Commission on the legislative situation regarding anti-corruption mechanisms in Ukraine.

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"On December 9, 2020, the European Commission for Democracy through Law (Venice Commission) together with the Directorate General of Human Rights and Rule of Law of the Council of Europe issued an Urgent Joint Opinion on the legislative situation regarding anti-corruption mechanisms following the Constitutional Court's Decision No.13-r/2020 of October 27, 2020," the statement said. "The Constitutional Court of Ukraine treats the opinions of the Venice Commission with great respect."

"The principles of separation of powers and mutual respect between branches of government are enshrined in the Constitution of Ukraine. Constitutional Court decision No.13-r/2020 of October 27, 2020, and this Opinion state that the fight against corruption is an important element in a state governed by the rule of law, as well as the respect for the constitution and constitutional justice."

The CCU says the Venice Commission stressed that the principle of separation of powers presupposes, in particular, that the parliament and the executive agencies should respect the role of the Constitutional Court of Ukraine as the "gatekeeper" of the Constitution of Ukraine, as well as implement its decisions.

The Opinion emphasizes that despite the ambiguous perception of the CCU's decision, the constitutional role of the Constitutional Court must be respected and the Verkhovna Rada, Ukraine's parliament, must implement its decision by interpreting it in light of the Constitution of Ukraine and applicable international standards.

Background

  • On December 9, the Venice Commission and the Directorate General of Human Rights and Rule of Law (DGI) of the Council of Europe on December 9 issued an urgent joint opinion on the legislative situation regarding anti-corruption mechanisms following the decision of the Constitutional Court of Ukraine to repeal criminal liability for the inaccurate declaration of assets by the country's officials.
  • The Venice Commission has acknowledged that the Constitutional Court's decision in question "lacks clear reasoning, has no firm basis in international law, and was possibly tainted with a major procedural flaw – an unresolved question of a conflict of interest of some judges."
  • Also, the Commission advised the Verkhovna Rada to look into a number of solutions to the crisis.