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KIEV, July 2. /TASS/. Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko has submitted to the Verkhovna Rada (parliament) on Thursday draft amendments to the country’s Constitution regarding power decentralization. The corresponding document was published on the Ukrainian government website.
The draft has been "passed for consideration of the Rada leadership," the parliament said in a statement.
On Wednesday, Poroshenko said that he would submit the corresponding amendments by the end of the day. However, this information appeared only on Thursday.
The Ukrainian president also said that the draft constitutional amendments envisage "no special status for Donbas," however, according to Poroshenko, "the draft [amendments] envisages the possibility of a special local self-government procedure in separate administrative-territorial units of the Donetsk and Luhansk regions, determined by a separate law."
"The local self-government regime in separate areas of Donbas, in accordance with the transitional provisions [of the draft amendments to the Constitution], fully complies with the Minks agreements," the president added.
The Constitutional Commission approved on June 26 the basic text of decentralization amendments to the Ukrainian Constitution.
The Constitution’s draft has a clause in the "Transitional Provisions" part that says that the special local self-government regime in some areas of Donbas will be determined by a separate law.
Poroshenko said, addressing the Rada members on the day when the Constitutional Commission approved the draft amendments to the Fundamental Law, said that on the results of the amendments introduced to the Constitution, "Ukraine will remain a unitary state and we’ll have no compromise on that issue."
Poroshenko said that "Donbas representatives have taken part in drafting these constitutional changes." Following his statements, the authorities in the Donetsk and Luansk republics said that the DPR and LPR had delegated nobody to take part in the work of the Constitutional Commission.
Issues of foreign policy and security will remain under the supervision of the central authorities, Poroshenko said. "The issue of defence, external relations, development of the law enforcement system, security agencies, courts, Security Council of Ukraine, Prosecutor’s Office is not the subject of decentralization and will ensure integrity, sovereignty and independence of our state," the president said.
Ukrainian will remain the only state language in the country, according to Poroshenko.
A constitutional reform is an important part of the February 12 comprehensive action plan to fulfill the Minsk accords worked out by leaders of Russia, Ukraine, Germany and France in the search for peace in the embattled eastern Donbass region. A key element of reform is decentralization of government with respect to the peculiarities of certain parts of Donetsk and Lugansk regions agreed with their representatives, as well as adopting permanent legislation on the special status of certain Donbas areas.