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Ombudsman: Mobilization law at odds with Constitution

by Abbey Fenbert February 7, 2024 1:36 AM 2 min read
Ukrainian Parliament Commissioner for Human Rights (Ombudsman) Dmytro Lubinets attends the international conference of human rights commissioners in Ankara, Turkiye on Jan. 12, 2023. (Muhammed Abdullah Kurtar/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)
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The government's revised draft law on mobilization contains provisions that violate Ukraine's Constitution, chief Ombudsman Dmytro Lubinets said on social media Feb. 6.

Ukraine's leadership hopes to update the legal framework around conscription in order to ramp up mobilization in 2024. The government submitted a new draft of the mobilization law to parliament on Jan. 30, more than two weeks after withdrawing its initial, contentious version.

Lubinets said that the revised bill still "has a number of contradictory provisions."

One of the sections Lubinets criticized says that the military command may impose restrictions on the ability of Ukrainian citizens to leave the country. Lubinets said this violated Article 17 of Ukraine's Constitution, which prohibits the military from restricting the freedoms of citizens.

Lubinets also called attention to an amendment that requires a conscript, reservist, or any "person liable for military service" to register an electronic account. Failure to do so would invoke legal consequences.

"(S)uch a provision of the draft law does not comply with the provisions of the Constitution of Ukraine, the Law of Ukraine 'On Personal Data Protection,' and the legal positions of the Constitutional Court of Ukraine on the official interpretation of the right to private and family life."

Lubinets had previously criticized the government's initial draft law on the grounds that it violated Ukraine's Constitution and human rights.

He also said he addressed the problems with the revised draft in a nine-page letter to parliament's national security, defense and intelligence committee.

"In general, I, as the Ombudsman of Ukraine, agree that our state should improve the issues related to mobilization training and mobilization itself," he said on Feb. 6.

"However, this should be in line with the Constitution of Ukraine and international human rights agreements."

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