Ukrainian Parliament Passes Impeachment Law
The procedure for impeaching the president and citizenship for foreign soldiers defending Ukraine's frontlines were among the few bills passed by in the Verkhovna Rada today
Deputies supported a procedure for impeaching the president.
They voted for the law on temporary special and investigative commissions, which would investigate the actions of the president were he to violate the Constitution.
The current president, Volodymyr Zelenskyi, was himself a strong proponent for the law.
“A very important bill for our country, very important for overcoming corruption. Our faction will support this bill. I urge all my colleagues to unite and support it,” Deputy Artur Herasymov said.
“We have been working on this bill for many years. We have no option but to adopt this document by a majority vote of parliament. Both activists from civil society and representatives of various political forces demanded it. It will solve many problems concerning the policing of deputies, including special investigative commissions. In this law, we have prescribed a clear procedure for impeaching the president,” Deputy Andriy Pomazanov said.
Deputies also passed a law on granting citizenship to foreign soldiers who defended Ukraine in the Donbas against Russian aggression.
“A bill has been prepared, which should grant Ukrainian citizenship to such people and also protect them from unjustified extradition to countries that are not friendly to Ukraine,” Deputy Hryhoriy Nemyria said.
But there were not enough votes to dismiss ministers of foreign affairs and defense or the head of Ukraine’s Security Service. Motions to dismiss Foreign Minister Pavlo Klimkin, Defense Minister Stepan Poltorak and Security Service Chief Vasyl Hrytsak were submitted by President Volodymyr Zelenskyi. A majority of parliamentarians decided not to support their resignations until the president submits new candidates for the positions.
“The president asks you to support the motions, which are within his authority, in the manner and order provided for by the Constitution of Ukraine. As well as asking MPs not to impose on him any other things that have nothing to do with the constitution. This concerns the submission of other candidates. It will all take place step-by-step in accordance with the constitution,” the representative of the President in the parliament Ruslan Stefanshuk said.
“According to the Constitution of Ukraine, the president proposes, and the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine ratifies. We must know for certain that every day someone will defend our independence and there must be a minister of defense. In voting on the resignation, we must be certain of who will protect the security of Ukraine against Russian saboteurs, against Russian special services, and against Russian aggression,” Chairman of the Verkhovna Rada Andriy Parubiy said.
At the evening session, deputies will consider the electoral code. Changes in the legislation provide for eliminating first-past-the-post elections, and party lists in proportional elections will be open. Almost five thousand amendments to the bill have been proposed. Voting on them can begin on July 4, Speaker Andriy Parubiy said.