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Ukrainian Communists will be able to take part in elections if they change name

August 12, 2015, 1:56 UTC+3 KIEV
There are three conditions - to change the symbols, to change the name and to exclude propaganda provisions from the charter, First Deputy Justice Minister said
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KIEV, August 11. /TASS/. Ukraine’s Communist parties will be able to take part in elections if they change their names, First Deputy Justice Minister Natalia Sevostyanova said on Tuesday.

She confirmed that the ministry of justice had prohibited the country’s three Communist parties to take part in the local elections due in the autumn. "The commission on decommunization has taken a decision on se three political parties and they will not take part in the elections. I can tell it confidently. If the commission has imposed a ban, they will not be able to participate. This is an explicit provision and it says that if there is a commission ban, these parties cannot be participants in the election process," she told the television Channel 5.

However, in her words, they would be able to take part in the elections under other names. "There are three conditions - to change the symbols to avoid those of them that are identified by the law as propaganda, such as sickle, hammer, red stars and the like, to change the name and to exclude propaganda provisions from the charter," she said.

"No one is pursuing any political goals, it is just law," she underscored.

Earlier on Tuesday, Ukraine’s Communist Party filed a motion with the Kiev prosecutor’s office protesting against obstruction of its activities by Justice Minister Pavel Petrenko.

On July 23, Petrenko signed a number of instruction depriving Ukraine’s Communist parties the right to take part in political processes and elections in the country as con-compliant with the so-called decommunization laws.

"Petrenko’s actions run counter to the procedure of banning political parties’ activities established by the current law," the Communist Party said in its appeal. "Seeking to create artificial grounds not to let the Communist Party take part in the election process and hence to strip a possible rival of a possibility to be represented in the supreme legislative body, Petrenko committed action that can be interpreted as deliberate obstruction of legal activities of a political party."

On July 8, 2014, Ukraine’s minister of justice and the state register authority filed a suit with Kiev’s administrative court to outlaw the Ukrainian Communist Party in the country. After the first hearing of this case on July 24, 2014, the litigation was postponed several times. On May 25, 2015, Kiev’s administrative court withdrew the case. On April 9, 2015, Ukraine’s Verkhovna Rada (parliament) passed a law condemning Communist and Nazi totalitarian regimes, banned their propaganda and symbols. On May 15, 2015, President Pyotr Poroshenko signed four relevant laws, or the so-calle "decommuniczation package."

Ukraine has three Communist parties, namely the Ukrainian Communist Party, the Communist Party (renewed) and the Ukrainian Communist Party of Workers and Peasants. Secretary of the Ukrainian National Security and Defence Council Alexander Turchinov said earlier neither of them had a political party status from July 24, 2015.

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