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Case Studies

International support for defence reform in Ukraine

Context

Attempts at defence reform in Ukraine in the early 1990s were hampered by a lack of experience in state-building, a poor legislative basis, vague political objectives, the lack of qualified experts, the non-existent role of civil society, and continued Soviet-style thinking. Sustainable international engagement coupled with conditionality and a step-by-step approach towards political and institutional rapprochement started with the signing of the Partnership for Peace Framework Document (1994) and the NATO-Ukraine Charter (1997). Defence reform got off to a slow start but quickened after 2002. Ukraine’s decision to seek NATO membership led to a more intensive reform process, with NATO playing a major role in supporting defence reform.

Entry point

The strong move towards democratisation of the political elite and civil society, the resulting desire to join western regional organisations, and the continued interaction with international actors, especially NATO, were all important entry points. From an initial focus on defence reform, SSR efforts have just begun to broaden; new entry points include major deficits in law enforcement in Ukraine.

Lessons learned

Central role of political will — The speed of reforms picked up with growing political support from both the majority of Ukraine’s elite and the public for engaging with NATO and the EU. This led to a demand to extend general moves towards democracy to defence reform.

Establishment of structures for reform — Reform has been institutionalised through a framework of political co-operation that includes a Joint Working Group on Defence Reform. The group focuses on a growing range of issues such as civil-military relations, resource planning and management, and professional development. The adoption of an action plan in 2002 containing jointly agreed principles and objectives and supported by a detailed annual target plan provided concrete steps on the path to
defence reform. After the “Orange Revolution”, an intensified dialogue on Ukraine’s NATO membership aspirations was launched. This resulted in a State Programme of Development of the Armed Forces 2006-2011 that was more realistic than previous programmes.

Balancing costs and the speed of reforms — The economic constraints of the Soviet legacy continue to restrain the pace of reform. Confronted with a weak economy, limited resources and a broad reform agenda, SSR-related costs in terms of financial investment and human adaptability must be bearable for all stakeholders. The initial concentration on defence reform is justifiable, but as a result other security sectors are lagging far behind. Increased pressure for change has to be generated primarily via civil society and parliament.

Impact

The defence reforms have had an impact but, as the head of the NATO-Ukraine Joint Working Group on Defence Reform, John Colston, says, “the major challenge faced by Ukraine is the need for a comprehensive transformation of its security sector to align it more closely with Euro-Atlantic and the European standards. In other words, for the Ukraine’s security sector efforts to be successful, they should cover not only the Ministry of Defence and the Ukrainian armed forces, but also all other
security forces or law-enforcement institutions including internal security forces”.

case study

Assessing the EU's conflict prevention and peacebuilding interventions in Ukraine

The European Union has been slow and reactive in responding to the crisis in Ukraine and the following conflict between the Kremlin and Kyiv but, nevertheless, provided some positive impact on the peacebuilding process.

This in-depth case study analyses three EU conflict prevention and peacebuilding interventions in Ukraine: one diplomatic case (Normandy Format), two missions in the field of security sector reform -The European Union Border Assistance Mission to Moldova and Ukraine (EUBAM) and The European Union Advisory Mission Ukraine (EUAM)- and one in the field of governance reform (decentralization).

The study reflects how the EU's civilian capabilities in conflict prevention and peacebuilding can be enhanced and implemented in a more inclusive and sustainable manner.

To read the case study, Assessing the EU's conflict prevention and peacebuilding interventions in Ukraine, please follow the link provided.

case study

Policy and Research Papers

Monitoring and Evaluation (M&E) for Development in Peace-Precarious Situations

Monitoring and evaluation (M&E) supports evidence-based decision-making in program management through rigorous approaches to collecting and using quality data on program performance, results, and impact. The application of appropriate analytical tools in order to assess the efficiency and effectiveness of interventions in well-defined contexts over time contributes to our knowledge of the kinds of interventions that work best, and under which conditions. This paper focuses on the value of utilizing M&E information systems to improve both program impact and our understanding of how best to assist peaceful development in situations prone to violent conflict. Project M&E examples illustrate M&E strategies and tactics in peace-precarious situations, framing discussion of the utility of key M&E practices and approaches where stability and security are lacking. The final section suggests initial criteria for enhancing effective and cost-effective M&E that contributes more meaningfully to the success of development interventions in peace-precarious situations; the most critical of these is building flexible M&E systems that can respond appropriately to continue providing useful information under extreme uncertainty.

To view this publication, please follow this link.

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DCAF | OSCE Focus: Ukraine and European Security: Prospects for the Future

This DCAF publication gathers five "Food for thought papers" based on the OSCE Focus Conference titled "Ukraine and European Security: Prospects for the Future" that took place on 10th-11th October 2014 at the WMO in Geneva.

To access the full report, kindly follow the link.

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Armes et diplomatie en Ukraine à l’ombre de la crise syrienne

Faut-il envoyer des armes en Ukraine, pour soutenir les autorités de Kiev face aux rebelles séparatistes pro-russes du Donbass, et donc face à la Russie? Depuis que l’Est ukrainien a sombré dans la guerre, les pays occidentaux divergent sur cette question. Le débat, alimenté par des concepts ambigus tels que celui d’«armes non létales» ou d’«armes létales défensives», apparait ainsi comme confus. Cette Note d’Analyse a pour objectif de faire le point sur ce qui est dit et ce qui est fait dans le cadre de ce dossier épineux, que la crise syrienne aura rendu encore plus compliqué.

Document disponible ici: Armes et diplomatie en Ukraine à l’ombre de la crise syrienne

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L’Allemagne et le Partenariat oriental après la crise en Ukraine

Le conflit en Ukraine et autour de ses enjeux a propulsé le Partenariat oriental (PO) de l’Union européenne sous les feux de la rampe de la scène internationale. Considérée dédaigneusement comme un instrument politique bureaucratique et technique, la Politique européenne de voisinage (PEV) et son volet régional couvrant l’Europe de l’Est au sens large, le Partenariat oriental, ont gagné en importance de façon tout à fait inattendue sur le plan géopolitique en l’espace de quelques mois.

Du même coup, l’Allemagne – pourtant réticente à se placer en première ligne de l’initiative du PO – s’est retrouvée au centre des efforts de gestion de crise déployés en Ukraine. Pourtant, la position générale de l’Allemagne vis-à-vis du PO n’en a pas été changée pour autant en ce qui concerne la perspective d’une possible adhésion à l’UE des pays les plus avancés. Pour l’Allemagne, le PO reste un outil d’Ordnungspolitik – dont l’objet est de ramener l’ordre dans la région – et non un instrument de pré-adhésion.

Accéder au rapport complet en cliquant sur le lien: L’Allemagne et le Partenariat oriental après la crise en Ukraine

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International Support to Security Sector Reform in Ukraine

ukraine international support to SSR

In 2015, the Swedish National Contact Group for Security Sector Reform (NCSSR) conducted an SSR assessment of Ukraine on behalf of the Swedish government. Building on this experience, and on the report submitted to the Swedish government, the FBA has continued to work on mapping international support to SSR in Ukraine.

This publication by the Folke Bernadotte Academy is a contribution to information-sharing and coordination in favour of an effective, affordable, accountable and transparent security sector in Ukraine.

For full access to the report on International Support to Security Sector Reform in Ukraine, kindly follow the link.

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Justice Needs in Ukraine: Legal problems in daily life

This report by the Hague Institute for the Internationalisation of Law (HiiL) highlights the main findings from the 2015 Ukrainian Justice Needs and Satisfaction Survey, which has been compiled with input from more than 6,500 respondents from 24 regions of the country, including, despite the military activities in the East of Ukraine, respondents from Lugansk and Donetsk regions, as well asinternally displaced people (IDP). 

The main objective of the study is to explore and understand the justice needs and experiences of the people of Ukraine. It maps out the existing justice needs of Ukrainian men and women. The second objective is to understand the strategies that the individuals employ to respond to the existing needs for justice: where the people seek legal information and advice, which justice journeys they pursue to resolve the existing problems. From policy and practical perspectives, the most important part of the study is the attempt to understand how much fairness and justice the people receive when they need it. 

The report highlights a significant gap in access to justice in Ukraine along with difficult justice journeys. It also focuses particularly on the needs of IDP, and on the three more prevalent justice areas of employment, neighbour relations, and housing. Finally, it proposes bridging the gap between self-help and formal justice systems along with improving the access to information as the way forward, and argues for building an enabling justice environment.

For the full report on Justice Needs in Ukraine: Legal problems in daily life, kindly follow the link.

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L’Ukraine : une nouvelle source pour le trafic d’armes

GRIP UKRAINE

Cet éclairage du Groupe de recherche et d'information sur la paix et la sécurité (GRIP) par Jacqmin Denis explore les aspects sous-jacents au trafic d'armes en provenance de l'Ukraine. L'auteur touche ainsi à l'histoire récente du pays, notamment la période trouble suivant la dissolution de l'URSS, et au conflit qui a débuté en 2014. Le problème de la corruption est ensuite évoqué, avant de détailler certaines conséquences du trafic d'armes à l'échelle régionale.

Pour accéder à l'éclairage L’Ukraine : une nouvelle source pour le trafic d’armes du GRIP, veuillez suivre le lien.

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Isolation of Post-Soviet Conflict Regions Narrows the Road to Peace

Unresolved conflicts and breakaway territories divide five out of six of the European Union’s Eastern Partnership countries, most of them directly backed by the Russian Federation. But a policy of isolating the people living in these conflict regions narrows the road to peace. Based on the daily experiences of people in regions of Abkhazia, South Ossetia, Nagorno-Karabakh, Donetsk, Lugansk and Transnistria this paper sheds light on the daily life in conflicts that are unlikely to be resolved soon. 

For full access to Isolation of Post-Soviet Conflict Regions Narrows the Road to Peace, kindly follow the link. 

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Measuring Illicit Arms Flows: Ukraine

Measuring Illicit Arms Flows: Ukraine is the fourth case study in a series examining the measurement of illicit arms flows in the context of the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), specifically SDG 16.
Based on interviews carried out in Kiev in addition to desk research , this analysis outlines the sources of illicit arms flows in Ukraine and the status of government plans or action to counter the problem, the trafficking routes used to smuggle weapons, and key indicators of illicit arms flows in the period 2010-2016. 

For full access to the paper, Measuring Illicit Arms Flows: Ukraine, kindly follow the link. 

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Défense ukrainienne : une réforme difficile face à des défis multiples

L'auteur développe dans ce rapport les défis liés à la réforme des secteurs de la sécurité en Ukraine, trois ans après la « Révolution de la dignité ». De nouveaux documents stratégiques ont été publiés qui témoignent de la complexité des enjeux pesant sur la sécurité nationale de l’Ukraine. À la pression de l’OTAN s’ajoute celle de la société civile, qui s’illustre de diverses manières. Cependant, la réforme militaire pâtit encore de multiples contraintes liées à l'état des ressources disponibles, mais aussi aux résistances de différents acteurs nationaux et aux conflits interinstitutionnels.

Pour accéder à l'étude Défense ukrainienne : une réforme difficile face à des défis multiples, veuillez suivre le lien. 

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Criminal Justice Practice and Violence Against Women

The Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces (DCAF) and La Strada-Ukraine (LSU) collaborated to assess the current practices of the Ukrainian criminal justice system response to violence against women and domestic violence. The aim of the assessment was to identify the readiness of the criminal justice system to implement the principles and obligations associated with the Istanbul Convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence.

For full access to Criminal Justice Practice and Violence Against Women, kindly follow the link.

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Ukraine Reform Monitor: April 2017

In the past year, Ukraine’s reforms proceeded more slowly than previously against the background of consolidation of executive power under President Petro Poroshenko, resistance from oligarchs, and opposition in the parliament. The Carnegie Endowment relaunches the Ukraine Reform Monitor, which provides independent, fact-based, rigorous assessments of the scope and quality of reforms in Ukraine. 

For full access to Ukraine Reform Monitor: April 2017, kindly follow the link. 

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Ukraine’s New Diplomatic Battlefronts: U.S. Weapons, UN Peacekeepers

The front lines between the Ukrainian army and Moscow-backed forces in eastern Ukraine may be static but see frequent and violent firefights. Diplomatic manoeuvering over new U.S. lethal weapons for Kyiv risks aggravating the conflict and Russia’s UN peacekeeping proposal could prove a distraction from a genuine solution. Another new dimension to the international struggle over Ukraine are competing proposals from Moscow and Kyiv for a new UN peacekeeping operation that would keep armed forces apart in the main conflict areas in eastern Ukraine. So far, however, it is unclear whether these are schemes designed to sow confusion or genuinely intended to lead to a separation of forces...

For full access to Ukraine’s New Diplomatic Battlefronts: U.S. Weapons, UN Peacekeepers, kindly follow the link. 

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Making the System Work ¦ Financing Security Assistance for Ukraine

This report analyses corruption-related risks related to the provision of security assistance to Ukrainian armed forces. The Independent Defence Anti-Corruption Committee (NAKO) and Transparency International Defence & Security analysed the process by which security assistance is provided and diagnosed corruption-related risks, which can result in assistance being wasted or diverted. More widely, it delves into provision and supervision of security assistance within the larger ecosystem of Ukrainian institutions involved in defence governance, diagnosing the extent to which security assistance helps in the construction and strengthening of a robust, effective, accountable and legitimate security forces in Ukraine.

For full access to the report, Making the System Work. Financing Security Assistance for Ukraine, kindly follow the link. 

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Bataillons de volontaires et protecteurs de village : utilisateurs finaux à risque en Ukraine et Turquie

Les exportateurs d’armements livrent généralement leurs matériels à des utilisateurs gouvernementaux, forces régulières ou de police, à des entreprises privées voire à des civils habilités à détenir une arme. Mais dans certains cas, des utilisateurs non-étatiques atypiques viennent compléter cette liste de destinataires : les milices pro-gouvernementales. Ces milices peuvent occuper des fonctions similaires à celles des forces régulières ou de police tout en conservant leur autonomie vis-à-vis des règles auxquelles l’armée et les forces de sécurité régulières sont soumises. Cette Note s’attache à présenter les risques et les défis posés par d’éventuelles exportations d’armes vers ces acteurs non-étatiques à travers l’étude de deux milices pro-gouvernementales : les bataillons de volontaires ukrainiens et les protecteurs de village turcs.

Afin d'accéder à l'analyse, Bataillons de volontaires et protecteurs de village : utilisateurs finaux à risque en Ukraine et Turquie, veuillez suivre le lien.

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Supporting Ukraine’s Security Sector Reform: Mapping Security Sector Assistance Programmes

This Mapping Study seeks to support international engagement on security sector reform in Ukraine by identifying the extent and scope of current rule of law, security sector governance (SSG) and democratic oversight programming. By covering international and regional organisations’ initiatives, as well as national projects, the Study seeks to comprehensively map programmes assisting Ukraine’s democratic institutions, executive, government, independent oversight institutions, civil society, media and the security sector itself.

For full access to the report, Supporting Ukraine’s Security Sector Reform, please follow the link. 

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International support to Security Sector Reform in Ukraine: a mapping of SSR projects

In 2015, the Swedish National Contact Group for Security Sector Reform (NCSSR) conducted an SSR assessment of Ukraine on behalf of the Swedish government. Building on this experience, and on the report submitted to the Swedish government, the FBA has continued to work on mapping international support to SSR in Ukraine. This publication is a contribution to information-sharing and coordination in favour of an effective, affordable, accountable and transparent security sector in Ukraine.

Find out more about this mapping here

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Guarding the guardians: Ukraine’s security and judicial reforms under Zelensky

Despite Ukrainians’ deep unhappiness with the corruption and inefficiency of the judiciary and security bodies, the Poroshenko administration failed to reform these services. Political interference and personal enrichment have long been part of the practice of these services, overshadowing the strong work they are often capable of and holding back reformist elements. The EU, US, and NATO have worked together on encouraging reform in Ukraine, but they must now ensure that these services remain high in the minds of the Zelensky administration and of Rada members.

To access the full document on Guarding the guardians: Ukraine’s security and judicial reforms under Zelensky, please follow the link. 

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Books

Civil Society and the Security Sector

This volume analyses the role of civil society in the reform and oversight of the security sector in post- communist countries as a key aspect of the transition towards democracy. It is widely accepted that civil society actors have an important contribution to make in the governance of the security sector. However, that specific role has not been subject to much close or comparative examination. This book constitutes an attempt to examine and compare experiences of civil society participation in security oversight across Central and Eastern Europe. The first part of the volume presents the reader with the theoretical and conceptual background against which the potential role of civil society in security sector governance can be understood and assessed. The remainder of the book is comprised of nine country studies of civil society engagement with the security sector. Reviewing developments over the past 15 years of regime transformation in the region, the book draws upon a rich variety of cases that cast light on the different experiences, challenges, and successes of civil society actors and the media in democratization, security sector reform, and the exercise of democratic oversight of the security sector. Marina Caparini is senior fellow at the Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces. Philipp H. Fluri is deputy director of DCAF and executive director of DCAF Brussels (Belgium). Ferenc Molnar is a military sociologist and deputy director of the Centre for Strategic and Defence Studies, National Defence University, Budapest (Hungary).

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Civil-military Relations in Europe

Democracy is unlikely to develop or to endure unless military and other security forces are controlled by democratic institutions and necessary safeguards, checks and balances are in place. The result of a 2-year research project managed under the auspices of the European Group on Armed Forces and Society (ERGOMAS) and the Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces (DCAF), this comparative study examines how contemporary European states, both mature Western democracies and emerging democracies of post-communist Europe, manage the issue of how best to control the very institution that has been established for their protection and wields the monopoly of legitimate force. This volume contains 28 case studies from 14 countries: the Czech Republic, Germany, Georgia, France, Hungary, Ireland, Israel, Macedonia, Poland, Romania, Slovenia, Serbia and Montenegro, Switzerland, and the Ukraine. The studies cover a variety of situation from corruption to military incompetence, disobediencetowards civilian superiors, lack of expertise among civilians, to unauthorized strikes and accidents. They focus on the relationship between political, civilian and military actors while identifying problems and dangers that can emerge in those relations to the detriment of effective and legitimate democratic control. This book will be of much interest to students of Civil-Military Relations, military sociology, IR and strategic studies.

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Civil Society and the Security Sector

This volume analyses the role of civil society in the reform and oversight of the security sector in post-communist countries as a key aspect of the transition towards democracy.

It is widely accepted that civil society actors have an important contribution to make in the governance of the security sector. However, until now, that specific role has not been examined closely or in a comparative manner. This book constitutes a first attempt to examine and compare experiences across Central, Eastern and South Eastern Europe.

The first part of the volume presents the reader with the theoretical and conceptual background against which the potential role of civil society in security sector governance can be understood and assessed.

The remainder of the book is comprised of nine country studies of civil society engagement with the security sector. Reviewing developments over the past 15 years of regime transformation in the region, the book provides rich empirical detail and analysis that cast light on the different experiences, challenges, and successes of civil society actors and the media when engaging with the security policy domain. The resulting insights contribute to our understanding of security sector reform and the exercise of democratic oversight of the security sector.

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Transforming Police in Central and Eastern Europe: Process and Progress

The actions of the police both reflect and affect societal changes and the legitimacy that society vests in state authority. What principles and practices of good policing have emerged through processes of reform, trans-national exchanges and the creation of international regimes? This introductory chapter by the Geneva Centre for the Democratic Control of Armed Forces (DCAF) summarises some of the lessons learned on police reform and examines what has been achieved in police reform in transitional societies.

The idea that policing matters to democracy has slowly but firmly taken hold among politicians, scholars, policy-makers and the police themselves. Providing security is one of the basic demands that society makes of the state. This includes the demand by citizens and communities that their lives are protected by the social control apparatuses of the state. The police occupy a crucial political role in any society by virtue of the symbolic value of their work. This has an impact on the political and social discourse. The police are part of the system of governance. They matter in processes of state creation, the reproduction of peaceful social relations, the peaceful resolution of conflicts and the creation of social identities and bonds that underpin political life.

Conversely, ineffective, arbitrary or repressive social control undermines the legitimacy of existing state-society relations, complicates efforts to promote development, and severely limits the (re)building of democratic forms of governance and order. In short, the police matter beyond their merely functional work.

Reforms take time and patience. Nothing will work out quite as planned and expected. Adjustments have to be made in the course of reforms.

  • There will be resistance to reforms. This has to be undermined in such a way that those resisting will be seen by others as unreasonable and illegitimate in their objections and as protecting their own interests rather than looking out for the common good of society and the state.
  • Even enthusiastically received reforms will suffer a decline in energies and active support as time goes on. Reforms should be supported by occasional campaigns to stir up enthusiasm.
  • The pace of reforms must fit local conditions so as not to 'overwhelm' either the police or the public.
  • Police organisations seek to shape reforms towards their interests and are much more likely to adopt reforms that do not challenge the existing internal distribution of power and authority within the organisation.
  • Reforms must be built into managerial practice in the long term. A system should be developed to teach new leaders as they rise through the ranks.

The goals of democratic police reform (or creation of a democratic policing system) are:

  • sustained legitimacy;
  • skilled professionalism; and
  • effective accountability.
Book

Other Documents

Ukraine Reform Monitor: October 2015

This memo discusses the Ukraine Reform Monitor, which provides independent, rigorous assessments of the extent and quality of reforms in Ukraine. The Carnegie Endowment has assembled an independent team of Ukraine-based scholars to analyze reforms in four key areas; political and judicial reform, Economy policy, National security, and Decentralization. This second memo covers August and September 2015.

Article on the Ukraine Reform Monitor: October 2015

Other Document