Universal Periodic Review – MEDIA BRIEF


Wednesday, 24 October 2012 (morning)

(Disclaimer: The following brief is intended for use of the information media and is not an official record.  The note provides a brief factual summary of the UPR Working Group meeting with the State under review and does not cover all points addressed.  An official summary of the meeting can be found in the Working Group report.)

State under review

Represented by 14-member delegation headed by Mr Nazar Kulchytskyi, the Government Agent before the European Court of Human Rights, Minister of Justice of Ukraine.


To access national report, compilation of UN information, and summary of stakeholders’ information, visit the Ukraine page on UPR website.  

Troika *

Cameroon, Saudi Arabia, Ecuador.

Opening statement by State under review

Few points raised in the  opening statement of State under review:
 (See full statement on the Ukraine page on UPR website)

  • Over the last four years a number of steps for establishing guarantees of protection of human rights in different areas have been made;
  • Judicial reforms, new antidiscrimination legislation and comprehensive criminal procedures reforms have been undertaken;
  • Ukraine launched the process of criminal justice reform aimed at introducing of generally accepted international democratic standards;
  • In April 2012 the new Code of Criminal Procedure was adopted and became the first step of reform of the criminal justice system; as the next step the Law “On Bar and the Bar Association” has already been adopted and the Draft Law “On the Prosecutor’s Office” was underway;
  • The new Code of Criminal Procedure prescribed detailed procedures on the application of preventive measures and stipulated as the main measures bail and home arrest while deeming detention as an “extraordinary preventive measures”; the aim was to resolve the problem of unreasonable and extensive detention and of overcrowding of pre-trial detention facilities;
  • The new Criminal Code also aimed to resolve the problem of ineffective investigations under the complaints on ill-treatment and deprivation of life;
  • During 2011 and 2012, a set of laws were adopted aimed at improving the judicial system and administrative justice;
  • Responding to questions posted by States, the delegation noted that there was a draft law on domestic violence calling for alternative forms of punishment, as well as social services for victims of domestic violence and rehabilitation services for children;
  • As regards the issue of discrimination, the delegation noted that there was draft law to improve equal opportunities for women ensuring gender balance and a national programme created in August 2012 aimed to uphold the rights of persons with disabilities;
  • The State was working on an amendment to the law on national minorities affecting the Tatars and the Roma providing social services; efforts were also underway to integrate national languages into school, in particular the Roma language into school curriculum;
  • The State was providing assistance to victims of human trafficking and raising awareness on such cases and there was a law in that regard;
  • As far as prison reform, efforts were underway to improve conditions in detentions centres.


In total 57 States participated in the dialogue: 24 HRC members and 33 observers  (Statements available on the Ukraine page on UPR website).

Positive achievements

Positive achievements noted by delegations included, among others:

  • The new code of criminal procedure and judicial reforms;
  • Ratification of the Convention on the rights of persons with disabilities and its OP;
  • Progress made in the area of education, health and human and social development;
  • Efforts to protect the right of national and religious minorities;
  • The creation of the Commission on Prevention of Torture at the Office of the President;
  • The establishment of the Office of the Ombudsman.

Issues and Questions

Issues and questions raised by the Working Group included, among others:

  • Action taken to address discrimination against LGBT persons and based on sexual orientation;
  • Steps to guarantee the independence of the judiciary;
  • Plans to guarantee freedom of expression and association;
  • Measures to prevent torture and ill-treatment;
  • Steps to combat human trafficking and to rehabilitate victims;
  • Polices to promote and protect the rights of the child and to address cases of domestic violence.


States participating in the dialogue posed a series of recommendations to Ukraine. These pertained to the following issues, among others

  • Training in the area of human trafficking for those involved in addressing such cases as well as rehabilitation of victims;
  • Bringing national legislation related to trafficking and the sale of children in line with the related OP of the CRC and the implementation of the National Plan of Action for Children 2010-2016;
  • Investigations into all acts of violence against women and domestic violence;
  • Efforts to combat discrimination and to ensure that manifestations of racial, ethnic and religious hatred were promptly investigated;
  • Combatting all laws and practices discrimination against and which infringed on the rights of LGBT persons or on grounds of sexual orientation;
  • Ensuring and preserving the political, economic, social and cultural rights of the Crimean Tatars;
  • Setting up a mechanism for the prevention of torture consistent with the OPCAT and steps to ensure that all allegations of mistreatment of torture and ill-treatment of individuals in police custody were properly investigated;
  • Measures to improve the impartiality, objectivity and independence of the criminal justice system and ensuring that all citizens enjoyed their right to a fair trial;
  • Implementation of a law on freedom of assembly in compliance with article 21 of the ICCPR;
  • Promoting and supporting the freedom of the press and expression and ensuring fully transparent and impartial investigations and prosecutions in all cases of attacks against journalists;
  • Ensuring access for all affected persons to treatment for HIV;
  • Ratification of human rights instruments:  Rome Statute of the ICC, OP of the ICESC, the Convention on enforced and involuntary disappearances, the Convention on the rights of migrant workers and the Hague Convention on the protection of children with respect to inter-country adoption.

Adoption of report of Working Group

The adoption of the report of the UPR Working Group on Ukraine is scheduled to take place on Monday, 29 October 2012.

The troikas are a group of three States selected through a drawing of lots who serve as rapporteurs and who are charged with preparing the report of the Working Group on the country review with the involvement of the State under review and assistance from the OHCHR. 

Media contact: Rolando Gómez, Public Information Officer, OHCHR, + 41(0)22 917 9711, rgomez@ohchr.org