Lustration is More Critical than “De-communization” in Ukraine

Guest Contributor:

Klaudia Schultz

Last April, the Ukrainian parliament approved four bills intended to “de-communize” Ukraine. Among other things, the new laws outlaw communist and Soviet symbols. These new laws are the result of the Maidan revolution as well as of Ukrainian history and are clear reflection that Ukrainians want a new future — one without the rule of another totalitarian regime.

In that spirit, “de-communization” is an important step towards Ukraine reckoning with its Soviet past.

However, we would argue that lustration is more crucial. How Ukraine will deal with officials who have been tainted by complicity with the prior Yanukovych government or the authoritarian regime in Moscow is essential to the country’s immediate future.

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published 14 September 2015: Democracy, Europe, History, Reform