Rada adopts amnesty bill, will reconvene on Feb. 4

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The Verkhovna Rada, Ukraine’s parliament, has passed a bill on measures to eliminate the negative aftermath and prevent persecution and punishment of persons involved in developments during peaceful protest rallies, which was prepared by Regions Party faction member Yuriy Miroshnychenko.

The bill was supported by 232 lawmakers out of the 416 MPs registered in the session hall during the emergency meeting on Wednesday evening.

Parliament speaker Volodymyr Rybak closed the meeting shortly after the voting ended.

Lawmakers will gather for a scheduled session on February 4, 2014.

The text of the bill is unavailable on the parliament’s Web site yet.

The passed bill foresees amnesty only in case protesters vacate all the occupied administrative buildings.

Yet, as the author of the bill Miroshnychenko says this concerns all local government buildings only, while the bill isn’t applied to the buildings of the House of Trade Unions, Zhovtnevy Palace, Maidan Nezalezhnosti (Independence Square) and Khreschatyk Street downtown Kyiv.

“Vacate the buildings first, get this bill effective then. This bill will be in effect within 15 days,” he told reporters on Wednesday.

“On the one hand, it [the bill] foresees the vacating of all administrative buildings, premises belonging to central and local government agencies; on the other hand, the point at issue is the amnesty of people who have been either arrested or imprisoned,” he said.

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