Opening the VII Conference of Judges, Victor Yushchenko said it was necessary to reform the judicial system because of it “has not become truly independent in the last fourteen years.”

In his speech, the President of Ukraine criticized the current judicial system. He said almost no legal aid wasrendered to the poor. International experts, he said, believe the number of guilty verdicts demonstrates that our judges are biased and neglect the presumption of innocence. According to their statistics, 400 of 100.000 Ukrainians are currently imprisoned, while in Europe this figure is dramatically lower. Yushchenko said almost a half of all verdicts are never executed, while our courts are disastrously corrupt. The citizens of Ukraine do not regard courts to be authoritative bodies and thus do not trust them, the President's press office told.

“Our people feel unprotected because of all these problems,” he concluded.

The Head of State noted that every day he received hundreds of letters from the people. Most of them make complaints against our courts, prosecutor’s offices and police.

“A good judicial system can only be built in a democratic country. Judicial changes can only occur simultaneously with positive social changes. This is an obligation of the whole Ukrainian nation,” he said. “It is impossible to finance the current judicial system - we can only reform it.”


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