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Yevhen Bystrytsky commented the idea to limit operation of NGOs in Ukraine Друк
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IRF
Четвер, 21 квітня 2011, 13:16

The intention to limit operation of international non-governmental institutions contradicts Ukraine's chosen course for integration with the EU. Yevhen Bystrytsky, Executive Director of the International Renaissance Foundation, stated this in a comment to Kommersant-Ukraine regarding the publication's information about that representatives of the Party of Regions are preparing a draft law, intended to provide control over financing of non-governmental organizations in Ukraine.

“If Ukraine adopts a law that, like in Belarus or Russia, creates obstacles for independent actions of non-governmental organizations, such a step would cross out Ukraine's entry into the European Union”, emphasized Yevhen Bystrytsky.

He thinks that democracy exists mainly due to operation of international foundations in Ukraine since local business does not take a risk to finance independent critics of public authorities and demand that the latter act transparently, though at the same time local business does participate in some charitable projects.

According to Kommersant-Ukraine’s source, the Party of Regions (PoR) representatives has begun to develop a draft law providing Ukrainian NGOs can only exist on the money of Ukrainian citizens.

The Deputy Head of the PoR faction Vadim Kolesnichenko confirmed the information that PoR is prepared to limit the rules of financing public organizations. “Now we are preparing various solutions to the existing problem, which is that we must know clearly to what ends the money of foreign governments is spent on the territory of our country,” Mr. Kolesnichenko said.

According to him, in the first instance, it will be necessary for the draft law to regulate the order of receiving grants by public organization. “We must unequivocally react to the matters concerning the fight against extremism and activities directed against the existing government,” said the Deputy Head of the PoR faction. “If the money is going to charity, then it must be directed there or to other democratic institutions, not towards preparing revolutions,” he added.

“In some countries public organizations are financed exclusively by the citizens of a given country, due to the fact that there is often a temptation for foreign governments and foundations to act according to the principle of he who pays the piper calls the tune, “ said Parliament Deputy Yelena Bondarenko (PoR). She stressed that this is not the only version of financing under consideration and it early to speak about the outcome of the discussion.

Earlier, the Head of the PoR parliamentary faction Oleksandr Yefremov announced in the interview to the Luhansk television station LOT that, according to his information, “external donors,” one of which is allegedly American financier George Soros, have allocated funds to prepare people for carrying out projects ”according to the North African scenario.” “This exists and this is being prepared,” stressed Mr. Yefremov during the interview.

In the Russian Federation the Law on Non-Commercial Organization has existed since 1996. This document has seen a number of amendments. A similar law exists in Belarus, which forbids public organizations to receive assistance from abroad under the threat of closure.

***

Main objective of the International Renaissance Foundation is to provide financial and operational assistance to the development of an open and democratic society in Ukraine by supporting key civic initiatives in this area.

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