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Judicial reform and legal education are at the centre of demands for Eurointegration.

Читати українською.

A historic day. The European Commission recommends initiating negotiations for Ukraine's accession to the European Union. Ursula von der Leyen, the EC President, highlights that Ukraine has fulfilled 90% of prior recommendations, emphasising that the duration of negotiations hinges on reform progress.

What has Ukraine already done?

Ursula von der Leyen noted that Ukraine has achieved significant milestones, particularly in constitutional justice, High Council of Justice selection reform, anti-corruption initiatives, money laundering combat, measures against oligarchs, a new media law, and advancements in national minority issues. While progress is evident, the path forward is formidable.

But there is still a lot of work ahead. "The decision to open accession negotiations has yet to be made by all 27 EU countries in December. If it is made, the negotiation process will be a powerful locomotive that will give impetus to even more necessary reforms, primarily in the courts and the rule of law", explains the Chair of the board of DEJURE Foundation, Mykhailo Zhernakov.

Among the new recommendations, in particular:

  • complete the selection for open vacancies in the Constitutional Court in accordance with the new legislation;
  • restore the selection of judges in the conditions of an improved legal framework, clear criteria of integrity and professionalism, a strong role of the Public Integrity Council;
  • resume the qualification assessment suspended in 2019;
  • establish a Service of Disciplinary Inspectors after a transparent and objective selection process;
  • resume consideration of disciplinary proceedings against judges, giving preference to high-profile cases and cases in which the statute of limitations coincides;
  • eliminate corruption risks in the Supreme Court, in particular through checking of integrity declarations and asset declarations, disciplinary tools and improved selection processes with an emphasis on integrity and professional ethics;
  • create a new administrative court to hear cases involving central authorities. Staff it with judges who have passed the vetting;
  • complete a comprehensive IT audit and, based on its results, implement a road map for IT modernisation in the judicial system, including the development of a new case management system.

The document also contains a number of recommendations regarding legal education:

  • clear distinction between legal education and personnel training for law enforcement agencies;
  • strengthening requirements for admission to law schools;
  • strengthening of law school licensing requirements;
  • transparent allocation of state funding;
  • modernization of educational programs with an emphasis on ethics, practical training, EU law and international exchanges;
  • implementation of the Unified State Qualification Exam;
  • fight against corruption and plagiarism.

We greatly appreciate the European Commission’s such a comprehensive list. Most of it is the priorities of DEJURE Foundation. We also thank all Ukrainians, especially the Armed Forces of Ukraine. Today is our joint achievement!