Law of Ukraine

"On Ratification of the Agreement between Ukraine on Australia on Deployment of Australian Personnel in Ukraine in Connection with the Crash of the Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17"

Date of entry into force:
August 12, 2014

The Agreement between Ukraine on Australia on Deployment of Australian Personnel in Ukraine in Connection with the Crash of the Malaysia Airlines Flight MH17 (hereinafter referred to as "Agreement") was signed on July 24, 2014 in Kyiv.

The Constitution of Ukraine (Article 85, paragraph 32) states that the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine provides consent for Ukraine to be bound by international agreements. And, according to Article 9 of the Law of Ukraine "On International Agreements of Ukraine", the Agreement is subject to ratification.

The Law ratifies the Agreement.

Article 1 of the Agreement establishes the following:
  • Australia can deploy police, military and civilian personnel (hereinafter referred to as "Australian personnel") and assets related to them in Ukraine, in connection with the crash of the Malaysia Airlines flight MH17;
  • the Australian personnel shall include a maximum of 250 armed people;
  • the Australian personnel can provide assistance in the search and collection of remains, investigation of the crash, and criminal investigation (which can include ensuring security), and carry out other activities to be defined collectively by the Parties (hereinafter referred to as "Activities"). The Australian personnel shall be free to move on the territory of Ukraine in order to travel to areas related to the plane crash investigation. The Australian personnel shall request Ukraine's consent to move to areas not related to the plane crash investigation. The Australian personnel shall coordinate its movements through military action zones with appropriate Ukrainian authorities;
  • The Australian personnel shall remain under Australian national command. Subject to adherence to Australia's national legislation and international obligations, the Australian personnel shall adhere to the Ukrainian legislation and refrain from any actions that are incompatible with the fulfillment of their duties;
  • for the purposes of the Activities, the Australian personnel shall coordinate its actions with the special monitoring mission of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) in Ukraine;
  • the term of deployment of the Australian personnel will last as long as is necessary to complete the Activities, unless otherwise determined by the Parties.

The Australian personnel shall be granted the right of entry to Ukraine and exit from Ukraine without obstruction or delay. Entry to Ukraine, exit from Ukraine and movement throughout the territory of Ukraine shall require passport documents, without visa requirements. Arms, equipment, vehicles, fuel and lubricants, material assets and other goods for use by the Australian personnel can be brought into the territory of Ukraine as temporary imports, exempt from taxes, customs duties and fees (Article 2 of the Agreement).

According to Article 3 of the Agreement, the Australian personnel is licensed to bear arms and use force if necessary, to the extent required to achieve the objectives of the Activity, including the use of lethal force in self-defense.

Australia shall conduct investigation related to any event or incident related exclusively to Australian aircraft, vehicles or ships. Australia shall conduct investigation related to any event or incident related to Australian aircraft, vehicles or ships, as well as aircraft, vehicles or ships of third parties, unless otherwise provided by the Ukrainian legislation or international law. The Parties shall conduct joint investigation in case of incidents related to Australian aircraft, vehicles or ships and Ukrainian aircraft, vehicles or ships. With regard to all incidents related to Australian aircraft, vehicles or ships, the Australian personnel shall secure the crash side and ensure preservation of all debris and remains of Australian aircraft, vehicles or ships (Article 10 of the Agreement).

Article 11 of the Agreement provides that Ukraine shall supply the Australian personnel with all and any information required to realize the latter's mandate, and provide the Australian personnel with all available schematics, maps and other information which may be useful to facilitate movement of the Australian personnel to Ukraine and throughout its territory, in particular, information pertaining to the location of any citizens, threats, or obstacles.

The Law is aimed at legislative facilitation of the investigation of the Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 plane crash.
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