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Ukrainian decolonization law comes into force: What does it mean

Ukrainian decolonization law comes into force: What does it mean The law on decolonization has come into force in Ukraine (Photo: Getty Images)
Author: Daria Shekina

On July 27, the law on decolonization came into force in Ukraine, introducing a series of restrictions on geographical names in the country. It aims to counter Russian imperial propaganda, according to the press service of the Institute of National Memory of Ukraine.

In Ukraine, the law on decolonization came into force today, July 27, which introduces a series of prohibitions regarding geographical names as part of the country's efforts to counter Russian imperial propaganda.

According to the document, the law

  • Defines and condemns Russian imperial policy as criminal.
  • Prohibits the promotion of symbols related to Russian imperial policy.
  • Specifies the procedure for the elimination of such symbols in public spaces.
  • The law also provides a definition of Russian imperial policy, which encompasses systematic actions aimed at subjugating, exploiting, and assimilating Ukrainians, starting from the time of the Tsardom of Moscow to the modern Russian Federation. This policy includes Russification, the imposition of the Russian language, and the promotion of Russian culture.

The main prohibitions introduced by the law are as follows

  • Propagating Russian policy.
  • Displaying symbols of Russian imperial policy in public spaces.
  • Giving names that glorify, perpetuate, promote, or contain symbols of Russian imperial policy and the modern Russian Federation as an aggressor state, to geographical objects, legal entities, or property objects.
  • The law specifically refers to monuments and memorials, renaming streets, and other objects. It also requires the renaming of settlements with names that imply associations with Russia, its figures, or propagandists.

Additionally, images related to Russian and Soviet figures, Russian cities, and conquests will be banned. Valuable exhibits in museums will need to be relocated.

State and military authorities now have six months to implement the relevant provisions.