“In view of the ongoing aggression of the Russian Federation against Ukraine, Ukraine hereby informs the Depositary […] of the inability to guarantee the fulfilment by the Ukrainian side of obligations [under the above Convention] to the full extent for the period of the armed aggression of the Russian Federation and the martial law in place in the territory of Ukraine until complete termination of the encroachment upon the sovereignty, territorial integrity and inviolability of Ukraine.”
In February 2014 the Russian Federation launched armed aggression against Ukraine and occupied a part of the territory of Ukraine – the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol, and today exercises effective control over certain districts of the Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts of Ukraine. These actions are in gross violation of the Charter of the United Nations and constitute a threat to international peace and security. The Russian Federation, as the Aggressor State and Occupying Power, bears full responsibility for its actions and their consequences under international law.
The United Nations General Assembly Resolution A/RES/68/262 of 27 March 2014 confirmed the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Ukraine within its internationally recognized borders. The United Nations also called upon all States, international organizations and specialized agencies not to recognize any alteration of the status of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol.
In this regard, Ukraine states that from 20 February 2014 and for the period of temporary occupation by the Russian Federation of a part of the territory of Ukraine - the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol – as a result of the armed aggression of the Russian Federation committed against the Ukraine and until the complete restoration of the constitutional law and order and effective control by Ukraine over such occupied territory, as well as over certain districts of the Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts of Ukraine, which are temporarily not under control of Ukraine as a result of the aggression of the Russian Federation, the application and implementation by Ukraine of the obligations under the above Conventions, as applied to the aforementioned occupied and uncontrolled territory of Ukraine, is limited and is not guaranteed.
Documents or requests made or issued by the occupying authorities of the Russian Federation, its officials at any level in the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol and by the illegal authorities in certain districts of the Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts of Ukraine, which are temporarily not under control of Ukraine, are null and void and have no legal effect regardless of whether they are presented directly or indirectly through the authorities of the Russian Federation.
The provisions of the Conventions regarding the possibility of direct communication or interaction do not apply to the territorial organs of Ukraine in the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol, as well as in certain districts of the Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts of Ukraine, which are temporarily not under control of Ukraine. The procedure of the relevant communication is determined by the central authorities of Ukraine in Kyiv.
In accordance with Article 4 of the Convention, letters of request to be executed under Chapter I of the Convention must be in the Ukrainian language or be accompanied by a translation into the Ukrainian language;
In accordance with Article 8 of the Convention, members of the judicial personnel of the requesting authority of another Contracting Party may be present at the execution of a letter of request, if the possibility of such presence is confirmed by the consent of the Ministry of Justice of Ukraine;
In accordance with Article 23 of the Convention, Ukraine will not execute letters of request issued for the purpose of obtaining pre-trial discovery of documents as known in common law countries.
In accordance with Article 33 of the Convention, Ukraine makes the following reservations:
Ukraine excludes, in whole, the application of the provisions of paragraph 2 of Article 4 of the Convention;
Ukraine excludes the application within its territory of the provisions of Chapter II of the Convention, except for Articles 15, 20, 21 and 22.