On April 9, 2015, The Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine (Ukrainian Parliament) approved a government bill No. 2540 opening up access to the archives of repressive bodies of the Soviet Union totalitarian regime of 1917-1991.
Materials will be published not only on the requests of concerned citizens, but the responsibilities of the Institute of National Remembrance will include their systematic publication and promotion.
In the Article 7 of bill No. 2540 is said that access to Archival Information of repressive bodies is provided by:
- providing for everyone concerned the data carrier to review the archival information or its copy;
- access to a digital copy of the archive information;
- publication of the information on the official website of the organizer of a digital archival information and the copy of the archived information;
- making archival references, excerpts from documents;
- publication, exhibition and other forms of popularization repressive bodies’ archival information.
The law also prevents the ability to hide information:
Law on Personal Data Protection does not apply to information from the archives (Art. 1.3)
The assignment of the repressive bodies’ archival information to classified information is prohibited; (Art. 5.4 )
From Article 8:
Access to information can’t be limited in accordance with the laws and international treaties of Ukraine.
It can not be limited the access to repressive bodies’ archived information, which contain secrecy stamps not required by law of Ukraine (for example Soviet stamps “Secret” and “Top Secret”)
8.4. Archival information about staff or workers not on the staff of repressive authorities is in open access and can not be restricted for any reason
The only possible access restrictions:
A persons who are a victims of repression, have the right to restrict access to archival information about themselves. Such rights does not apply to people who were employees of repressive bodies and then became victims of repression.
The list of repressive bodies, which archives will be opened:
(including all units and departments)
The Ministry of Internal Affairs USSR
The Supreme Court
The Supreme Court of Cassation
The Supreme Cassation Tribunal
Ministry of Justice
Prosecution of USSR