On January 17, 2019, the Constitutional Tribunal of Poland declared the amendments to the Law on the Institute of National Remembrance with the definitions of "Ukrainian nationalists" and " Eastern Malopolska" unconstitutional. The relevant provisions of last year were challenged by President of Poland Andrzej Duda. He believes that the definition of "Ukrainian nationalists" and "Eastern Malopolska" are inaccurate, and thus violates the constitutional principle of the accuracy of the law, according to "Polskie Radio". The President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko welcomed the decision of the Polish Constitutional Tribunal and thanked Andrzej Duda.
On January 26, the Sejm of the Republic of Poland, the Lower House of Parliament, amended The Law on the Institute of National Remembrance, which prohibits propaganda of totalitarian ideologies and defined the criminal participation of "Bandera nationalists" in the destruction of the Jewish population and genocide of citizens of interwar Poland in Volhynia and "Eastern Malopolska" (i.e. Galicia). In addition, the Law provided for imprisonment for up to three years for violation of this provision, as well as for the dissemination of ideas about the guilt of the Polish people or state in the Holocaust. However at the end of June this norm from the document was removed.
According to the Constitutional Tribunal, the Law does not provide a clear definition of these terms regarding the crimes of "Ukrainian nationalists" in the territory of Volhynia and "Eastern Malopolska" from 1925 to 1950. The Law on the Institute of National Remembrance does not indicate at all whether "Ukrainian nationalists" should be understood as only organized politicals or paramilitary structures whose members participated in actions against state power and civilians, or those who are identified with the ideas of the Ukrainian national movement and acted against the Polish state and its citizens during the Second Polish Republic, the Second World War and in the post-war period", the Polish edition onet quotes judge Andrzej Zielonacki. The Sejm of the The Public Prosecutor General and the Prosecutor General's office believe that the definition of "Ukrainian nationalists" and "Eastern Malopolska " meet the requirements of criminal provisions.
Thus, the Ukrainian-Polish relations have lost one of the two major irritants. The Constitutional Tribunal of Poland finally adopted a long-awaited decision by abolishing the "Ukrainian part" of the amendments to the Law on the Institute of National Remembrance. It was a long-awaited decision, because six months earlier the Constitutional Tribunal of Poland adopted "the Israeli part of the provisions of the Law (regarding the amendments that caused Israel's protests and condemnation by United States).
It should be reminded that the adoption of this bill was one of the key legislative achievements of the far–right party Kukiz’15 and immediately caused international protests. However, the much publicity was not its Ukrainian part – the criminal liability for "denial of crimes of the Ukrainian nationalists in 1925-1950 and also crimes of the Ukrainian formations which were collaborators of the Third Reich during Second World War" and responsibility for the statement of Polish fault in war crimes of the Second World War.
At the same time, the Polish expert community was confident that the "Ukrainian part" of the Law on the Institute of National Remembrance will be abolished. "There was such a strange situation when nobody wants to call himself the father of the" Ukrainian part " of the Law on the Institute of National Remembrance! At least because it is now clear that this “Ukrainian part” is the result of a very expressive influence of Russian intelligence agencies. And logically no one can explain", at the end of last year, a well-known political scientist, Advisor to the head of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Poland Przemys?aw ?urawski vel Grajewski said in an interview with European Pravda.
After all, the President of Poland Andrzej Duda filed a submission to the Constitutional Tribunal to recognize these norms as unconstitutional. It can be said that these relations have now returned to the situation of the beginning of last year – before the adoption of this Law. However, the problem is that even then the crisis of relations was tangible problem to all. First of all, it is about the introduction by Ukraine of a moratorium to conduct exhumation works - a step that was painfully perceived in Poland. The assertion of a "historical crisis" between countries has become widespread after this moratorium. The Presidents of the two countries tried to solve this crisis – in December 2017, Petro Poroshenko and Andrzej Duda in Kharkiv agreed on a plan of measures to solve this crisis.
Now Ukraine has the opportunity to solve the painful conflict with a neighbor. Everyone is interested in solving the conflict. Except, of course, Russia, where so eagerly await another escalation of the disputes between Kyiv and Warsaw. Due to the fact that in recent years our state has had quite a lot of misunderstandings with Poland, first of all, on historical issues, the abolition of the scandalous bill by the Constitutional Tribunal, which caused positive approval from Ukraine, created favorable conditions for solving problems existing between the two states. Taking into account that Poland is our strategic partner, it is extremely important for the parties to maintain relations in the context of good-neighbourliness.