14:28 14.06.2018

Drone flight restriction opponents believe limits introduced by State Aviation Service unconstitutional

3 min read

KYIV. June 14 (Interfax-Ukraine) – Representatives of mass media, lawyers and owners of remote-piloted vehicles believe that the temporary rules for the use of airspace in Ukraine restricting flights of drones weighing under 2 kg introduced by the State Aviation Service is unconstitutional.

They announced their objections at a press conference at Interfax-Ukraine on Thursday.

Lawyer of the Institute of Mass Media Al Safarov said that the interference of the state in the implementation of freedom of speech should not exceed the level required in democratic society.

"One cannot hold a person criminally accountable for filming some things using drones with the purpose of revealing a corruption scheme as the highest punishment in society," he said.

Safarov also said that the temporary rules for the use of airspace in Ukraine published by the State Aviation Service was passed in way that it is impossible to appeal it under administrative procedure seeking to declare it not meeting the Constitution and legislation of Ukraine, as it was approved not in line with the procedure prescribed by the law.

The conference participants also condemned the rules of piloting drones in cities and towns, as they are contrary to good sense both in their application and the punishment selected for violation of the rules.

"The situation appears when the application of the rules and the punishment for violation of these rules could be used not with the purpose of ensuring security, but with the purpose of stopping, for example, anti-corruption investigations," Safarov said.

Lawyer, air intelligence officer, ATO fighter Masi Nayyem (brother of MP Mustafa Nayyem) also said that the rules violate rights of Ukrainians.

"These rules have not yet been submitted to the Justice Ministry, while according to the current procedure they cannot be registered by the Justice Ministry, as they violate Article 34 of the Constitution of Ukraine and Article 10 of the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights [and Fundamental Freedoms]… If the minister really decides that the rules should be registered, we will challenge these actions in courts," Nayyem said.

Chairman of the Ukrainian Federation of Drone Owners Taras Troyak said that he plans to participate in the profile discussion regarding the rules with participation of Infrastructure Minister Volodymyr Omelyan next week.

He also said that the rules passed by the State Aviation Service are tougher than European ones.

"What I find disturbing is that I cannot fly higher than 50 meters. No European country has such a limit. They have the limit of 120 meters. Moreover, for flying higher than 50 meters I have to receive a permit 10 days before the expected flight, predicting the weather and specifying the time," he said.

He also said that these requirements are hard to fulfill, especially for the police, as the use of drones for them is also not allowed without a permit.