Mission & Name
US Foreign Policy (Dr. El-Najjar's Articles)
William Hague Deceived House of Commons About
Legitimacy of New Regime in Ukraine
By David Morrison
Al-Jazeerah, CCUN, March 15, 2014
Foreign Minister William
Hague deceived the House of Commons about the legitimacy of the new regime
in Ukraine in a statement on 4 March 2014.
He led the House to
believe that the Ukrainian parliament, the Verkhovna Rada, had removed
President Yanukovich from power on 22 February 2014 in accordance with the
Ukrainian constitution and that therefore “it is wrong to question the
legitimacy of the new authorities” (see
It is simply untrue that the Rada followed the procedure
laid down in the
Ukrainian constitution to impeach and remove a president from power.
* * * *
This procedure, laid down in Article
111 of the constitution (see text below), is not unlike that required for
the impeachment and removal from power of a US president, which could take
Thus, Article 111 obliges the Rada to establish a
special investigatory commission to formulate charges against the president,
seek evidence to justify the charges and come to conclusions about the
president’s guilt for the Rada to consider.
Prior to a final
vote to remove a president from power, it requires
the Constitutional Court of Ukraine to review the case and certify that the
constitutional procedure of investigation and consideration has been
(b) the Supreme Court of Ukraine must certify
that the acts of which the President is accused are worthy of impeachment.
The Rada didn’t follow this procedure at all. No
investigatory commission was established and the Courts were not involved.
On 22 February 2014, the Rada simply passed a bill removing President
Yanukovych from office.
Furthermore, the bill wasn’t even
supported by three quarters of the members of the Rada, as required by
Article 111 for the removal of a president from office – it was supported by
328 members, when it required 338 (since the Rada has 450 members).
* * * *
Justifying UK support for the new regime
in Kiev in the House of Commons on 4 March 2014, William Hague said:
“Former President Yanukovych left his post and then left the country, and
the decisions on replacing him with an acting President were made by the
Rada, the Ukrainian Parliament, by the very large majorities required under
the constitution, including with the support of members of former President
Yanukovych’s party, the Party of Regions, so it is wrong to question the
legitimacy of the new authorities.”
That is a calculated deception
of the House of Commons, designed to give the impression that the procedure
prescribed in the Ukrainian constitution for the removal of a president from
office had been followed, when it hadn’t.
Annex: Article 111
of the Ukrainian Constitution
The President of Ukraine may
be removed from office by the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine by the procedure of
impeachment, in the event that he or she commits state treason or other
The issue of the removal of the President of Ukraine from
office by the procedure of impeachment is initiated by the majority of the
constitutional composition of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine.
conduct the investigation, the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine establishes a
special temporary investigatory commission whose composition includes a
special procurator and special investigators.
The conclusions and
proposals of the temporary investigatory commission are considered at a
meeting of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine.
For cause, the Verkhovna
Rada of Ukraine, by no less than two-thirds of its constitutional
composition, adopts a decision on the accusation of the President of
The decision on the removal of the President of Ukraine
from office by the procedure of impeachment is adopted by the Verkhovna Rada
of Ukraine by no less than three-quarters of its constitutional composition,
after the review of the case by the Constitutional Court of Ukraine and the
receipt of its opinion on the observance of the constitutional procedure of
investigation and consideration of the case of impeachment, and the receipt
of the opinion of the Supreme Court of Ukraine to the effect that the acts,
of which the President of Ukraine is accused, contain elements of state
treason or other crime.