Ukrainian Parliament tightened control over religious organizations
Contrary to an agreement with the Ukrainian Council of Churches and Religious Organizations October 16, 2012 Ukrainian Parliament adopted as the law the draft law № 10221, which makes significant changes to the Law "On Freedom of Conscience and Religious Organizations", reports the Institute for Religious Freedom.
The new law complicates the procedure for obtaining by religious organizations the status of the legal entity in connection with the introduction of two inconsistent registration procedures: registration of statutes and state registration (inclusion in the Unified Register of Legal Entities).
In addition, like in the days of the Soviet totalitarian past, the draft law № 10221 provides for the right to monitor the implementation of legislation on freedom of conscience and religion to the public prosecution bodies, the Ministry of Culture and other ministries and local authorities.
It should be noted that with the adoption of this decision the parliamentary majority has completely ignored the position of the religious community and the agreements reached by the Ukrainian Council of Churches and Religious Organizations with the author of the project – Permanent Representative of the President in the parliament Yuriy Miroshnychenko and its developer – the Ministry of Justice of Ukraine on behalf of the Deputy Minister Inna Yemelyanova.
Consideration of the draft at the session hall of the Parliament passed without discussion and lasted less than a minute, which was enough for voting. Besides, the profile Committee on culture and spirituality did not prepare the text of the draft law for the second reading and thereby made it impossible to adopt the amendments of UCCRO.
Development of the Ministry of Justice and the Parliament's adoption of the draft law № 10221 took place despite the promise of the President of Ukraine Viktor Yanukovych, given to the leaders of churches and religious organizations at a meeting on April 21, 2011, that the Law on freedom of conscience will not be altered in the absence of a consensus support from denominations.
Given the situation, as it became known to IRF, members of the Ukrainian Council of Churches and Religious Organizations have already prepared an appeal to the Head of State for a veto on the draft law № 10221 in part to prevent any changes to the text of the current Law of Ukraine "On Freedom of Conscience and Religious Organizations".
This appeal will be passed during the meeting of leaders of denominations with the President Viktor Yanukovych, scheduled for Wednesday, October 17, according to the official website of the President.