Zelensky bans another Ukrainian opposition party


Zelensky bans another Ukrainian opposition party

Kiev has outlawed another political force amid questions about the legitimacy of the government

A Ukrainian court has banned the Nash Krai (Our Land) political party and ordered the seizure of its assets at the request of the Ministry of Justice. The move is the latest in a crackdown on the opposition under Vladimir Zelensky’s administration.

A panel of judges from the Eighth Administrative Court of Appeal issued the ruling on Wednesday, according to a statement.

“The court satisfied the claims of the Ministry of Justice of Ukraine: the activities of the political party Nash Krai were banned; the property, funds and other assets of the party, its regional, city, district organizations, primary cells and other structural units were transferred to the state,” the statement read.

The party was registered in August 2011 as the ‘Bloc Party’ and was renamed ‘Nash Krai’ in 2014. From 2015, the party positioned itself as a “group of local leaders and businessmen” who aimed to avoid political games and intrigue, according to RBK Ukraine. Only three of its members were elected to the Verkhovna Rada (Ukrainian parliament) as independents in 2019, but the party gained some 1,694 seats in regional administrations during local elections in 2020.

Following the escalation with Russia in February 2022, Zelensky banned major political competition, including Opposition Platform – For Life (OPZZh), the second biggest party in terms of seats in the Verkhovna Rada. He also cracked down on the media, shutting down multiple television channels associated with his political opponents and consolidating nine of the largest TV networks into a single 24-hour state-run broadcast dubbed ‘Telemarathon’.

Zelensky’s presidential term expired on May 20, although he chose not to hold elections under the pretext of martial law imposed after the beginning of the conflict with Russia.

Russian President Vladimir Putin has noted the Ukrainian constitution has no provision for prolonging a president’s term in this way. It forbids holding elections during a period of emergency, and explicitly states lawmakers should retain their powers until a new parliament can be elected by the people, Putin said, calling the current Ukrainian political situation a “usurpation of power.”

Start the Conversation

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *