The below is attributable to Deputy Spokesperson Shejal Pulivarti:
On April 24, Deputy Administrator Isobel Coleman met with Chief Justice of Ukraine’s Supreme Court Vsevolod Serhiiovych Kniaziev and discussed the progress the Government of Ukraine has made on judicial reforms, despite difficult conditions created by Putin’s full-scale war against Ukraine.
The Deputy Administrator reaffirmed USAID’s support for notable reforms, such as the reestablishment of the High Council of Justice. The Deputy Administrator underscored the importance of moving forward with the appointment of members to the High Qualifications Commission of Judges (HQCJ) through a transparent, open selection process, noting that this step is an important prerequisite to the successful resumption of the selection and qualifications assessment for more than 2,000 judicial vacancies across Ukraine. The Deputy Administrator also expressed her support for the High Council of Justice’s decision to broadcast the HQCJ member selection process live as a way to enhance public trust in the process. She encouraged Chief Justice Kniaziev to move forward in the reconstitution of the Public Integrity Council, Ukraine’s civil society advisory body to the HQCJ to assist in the vetting of judgeship candidates and sitting judges.
Deputy Administrator Coleman acknowledged Chief Justice Kniaziev’s commitment to expanding access to justice in Ukraine, noting that these efforts will be integral to Ukraine’s recovery. She detailed the agency’s support for increasing the number of courts and building out the number of community justice centers delivering free legal assistance.
During the meeting, they also discussed USAID’s ongoing support for Ukraine’s efforts to document and adjudicate war crimes and crimes against humanity, including providing tailored training to judges and court staff.
Deputy Administrator Coleman reiterated USAID’s commitment to Ukraine’s long-term recovery and reconstruction.