Council of Europe, Strasbourg – Today the President of the Venice Commission of the Council of Europe Mr Gianni Buquicchio made the following statement:
“I welcome that the judgment of the Constitutional Court of Ukraine of 11 March declares unconstitutional the amendment to the Law on the Judiciary and the Status of Judges which reduced the maximum number of judges in the Supreme Court from 200 to 100. In its Opinion of December 2019 the Venice Commission asked for this provision to be removed.
The Commission was deeply worried that this amendment would have led to major changes in the composition of the Supreme Court, which had already been comprehensively reformed based on legislation adopted by the previous Verkhovna Rada. Doing so again, following elections, would have sent a message both to the judges and to the general public that it depends on the will of the respective majority in parliament whether judges of the highest court may stay in office or not. I therefore congratulate the Constitutional Court for its decision, which strengthens the independence not only of the Supreme Court but of the Ukrainian judiciary in general.“