Rada passes 2016 amnesty bill
The Verkhovna Rada, Ukraine's parliament, has passed a bill on amnesty in 2016, which applies to, among others, combatants who have defended the sovereignty and territorial independence of Ukraine.
Bill No. 4255 was supported by 247 lawmakers at a meeting on Thursday.
The document provides for amnesty to those groups of the convicts who are the most vulnerable, including women and minors, as well as men who have children under 16 or disabled children. It is also applicable to disabled persons belonging to disability categories 1, 2 and 3, TB and cancer patients, persons who have reached the retirement age and combatants who have defended the independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine, being directly involved in the Anti-Terrorist Operation (ATO) in eastern Ukraine.
The main criteria for amnesty is a minor social danger of the crimes committed by abovementioned persons who are serving a sentence, as well as objective factors, namely serious illnesses, old age, etc.
The bill also defines the category of convicted persons not subject to the amnesty. In particular, the persons "who have committed grave and especially grave crimes, as well as persons who have committed a crime by abuse of office (corruption offenses)" cannot be granted an amnesty.