Thousands of Ukrainian judges are facing a huge overhaul sought by the EU. The EU has long called for reforms to Ukraine’s judicial system, arguing that it is corrupt and inefficient. In 2023, the EU granted Ukraine candidate status for membership, but on the condition that it carry out a number of reforms, including a major overhaul of the judiciary.
The overhaul is being carried out in two stages. The first stage, which is currently underway, involves the re-evaluation of all sitting judges. This process is being overseen by the High Judicial Council, which is an independent body made up of judges, lawyers, and academics. The High Judicial Council is tasked with assessing the competence and integrity of each judge. Those judges who are found to be incompetent or corrupt will be dismissed.
The second stage of the overhaul will involve the selection of new judges to replace those who have been dismissed. This process is expected to begin in 2024. The new judges will be selected through a merit-based competition. The EU has provided financial assistance to Ukraine to help fund the overhaul of the judiciary.
The overhaul of the judiciary is a major challenge for Ukraine. The country has a long history of corruption and inefficiency in its judicial system. However, the EU has made it clear that the overhaul is essential for Ukraine’s progress towards membership of the bloc.
In addition to the EU, the United States and other Western countries have also called for reforms to Ukraine’s judicial system. The US Department of State has said that the overhaul of the judiciary is “a critical step in Ukraine’s efforts to build a more democratic and just society.”
The overhaul of the judiciary is a complex and challenging process, but it is essential for Ukraine’s future. A fair and efficient judicial system is a cornerstone of any democracy. It is also essential for economic growth and development.