Ukrainian Politics

 Ukraine’s parliament approves bill setting up Ministry for Veterans Affairs

The Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine Wednesday adopted a resolution (No. 7505) urging the government to establish the Ministry for Veterans Affairs - a central executive body ensuring the formation and implementation of national policy in terms of social protection of war veterans

As reported by a correspondent for Censor.NET, the decision was supported by 241 lawmakers.

The resolution provides for the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine to urge the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine to create a central executive body ensuring the formation and implementation of national policy in terms of social protection of war veterans based on the already existing State Service on War Veterans and Participants of the Anti-Terrorist Operation.

The ministry is aimed at creating an effective system for the social protection of war veterans, taking into account the international experience in this area.

As reported by Kyiv Post, over the past three years, parliament has adopted 32 laws on social protection for veterans and their families in the wake of the launch of Russian aggression against Ukraine, the explanatory note to the bill says.

"However, the diffuse system of authorities responsible for those issues (over 20 ministries and departments, as well as local councils and authorities) has caused bureaucratic chaos, and interfered in the complete and timely resolution of important social issues for (combat veterans)," the document reads.

The law states that as of June 1, 2017 there were 457,700 registered combat veterans of various conflicts in Ukraine, including 300,200 participants of the Anti-Terrorist Operation – the legal term Ukraine formerly used to refer to Russia’s war in the Donbas. Some 138,600 veterans are disabled, with 5,500 of them Ukrainian combatants of the war in the east. Up to 211,400 persons are family members of veterans who were killed in the war, or who died afterwards, Some 8,000 are relatives of those killed in action in the east.

As the war continues, these figures keep growing. According to the law, as of January 2017 the number of Donbas veterans had increased to 324,000.

The note to the law also adds that the Rada had on Feb. 9 approached the cabinet to consider the question of setting up a veterans ministry. However, despite having endorsed the appeal, the government did not act.

The new law stipulates that the government must report to parliament about measures taken to set up the new ministry within a month.

According to Ivan Vinnyk, a lawmaker from the Petro Poroshenko Block, the new ministry will take care of all veteran of all wars, including World War II. Lawmaker Maksym Burbak, the leader of the Narodniy Front faction in parliament, said it would be based on the model of the United States Department of Veterans Affairs.

Источник: https://censor.net.ua/en/n3052718