On April 17 the workshop was held in Odesa on discussing the draft of the Advocates’ Declaration on the Protection of Human Rights in Criminal Cases. This event opened a series of workshops dedicated to the development of a single document which would summarize the advocates’ standpoint on the key necessary changes and become the tool of amending the present human rights protection practice in the criminal proceedings.

The workshop was organized by the Ukrainian National Bar Association, Association of Lawyers of Ukraine and AUCO “Association of Advocates of Ukraine” with the support of the EU Project “Support to Justice Sector Reforms in Ukraine”.

Representatives of Odesa, Mykolayiv and Kherson oblasts bar associations participated in the event.

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According to Iosyp Bronz, Chairman of the Odesa Oblast Bar Council, violation of human rights in the criminal process is a huge problem because the current Criminal Procedural Code of Ukraine contains provisions inherited from Soviet times. He expressed his hope to see the recommendations on solving these urgent issues in the Declaration.

“This Declaration is an important tool for all justice sector stakeholders. It should help advocates, judges and prosecutors to take a step closer to common understanding and interpretation of problematic provisions, thus improving the situation with the human rights protection. It is important to create the shared legal culture, where each party to the criminal process will have respect towards the other ones,”- emphasized Virgilijus Valancius, Team Leader  of the EU Project “Support to Justice Sector Reforms in Ukraine”.

“Declaration is novel and important tool to make sure that practice in criminal cases conforms with the law and the human rights standards. We are very pleased to initiate the process of discussing the Declaration in Odesa,”- said Mark Segal, Key Expert on Access to Justice and Right to Defense of the EU Project “Support to Justice Sector Reforms in Ukraine”.

Roundtables on discussing the Advocates’ Declaration on the Protection of Human Rights in Criminal Cases will be held in 11 oblasts of Ukraine from April to June 2015. On April 16, a working meeting of the coordinators/moderators for development and discussion of the Declaration on protection of human rights in the criminal process, was held. The EU Project experts Oksana Tsymbrivska and Karen Madoian together with the representatives of the Ukrainian National Association of Advocates Vadym Krasnyk and Anna Kolesnyk facilitated the meeting. Workshops on discussing the Advocates’ Declaration on the Protection of Human Rights in Criminal Cases will be held in 11 oblasts of Ukraine from April to June 2015.

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