October 30, 2023, 17:06

Can obtaining russian passport in occupied territory be considered collaborating with enemy: human rights defenders explain

Obtaining a russian passport in the temporarily occupied territories may pose a threat to the security of Ukrainian citizens, but in no case can it be considered collaborating with the enemy, particularly given the atmosphere of coercion in the occupied territories.

Onysiia Syniuk, Legal Analyst at ZMINA. made this statement during an event at the country’s main discussion platform BrainHub at Media Center Ukraine – Ukrinform.

“One should not take (a russian passport – Ed.) primarily for the personal safety in the occupied territories, because, in any case, it is a documentary connection with the aggressor state, and this is not about further responsibility for collaborating with the enemy, but about their own safety in the occupied territory. This can be (dangerous – Ed.) both in terms of mobilization and further travel restrictions, a lot of problems can be created as a result of obtaining such a passport. But, if we are talking about the perception of such an action in the context of collaborating with the enemy, then at this moment, according to the current legislation, in no case can obtaining a russian passport be considered collaborating with the enemy, and, I hope, it will remain so,” the Legal Analyst noted.  

At the same time, Onysiia Syniuk explained whether persons holding certain positions in the occupied territory will be held responsible for obtaining a russian passport.

“In addition, obtaining a passport cannot be a criminal act in principle, even if we are talking about the aggressor state. If it is a person who holds a certain position, they will be responsible for holding that position, because it is impossible to hold a position in the russian administration without a russian passport. This will be a separate responsibility. There will be no criminal liability for obtaining the passport itself. Even more so, given the atmosphere of coercion in the occupied territories, as one cannot receive any administrative services, nor any medical services in the occupied territories without obtaining such a passport,” she explained.

BrainHub is the country’s main discussion platform created by Media Center Ukraine – Ukrinform. It brings together experts from the state and civil society sectors. BrainHub hosts intellectual discussions around the issues of the post-war reconstruction of Ukraine. It’s the birthplace of the best ideas that will become the foundation for the road map of Ukraine’s reconstruction in all sectors: economy, infrastructure, education, agriculture, security, digital, etc.

Read more: https://mediacenter.org.ua/news