The bill caused a lot of discussion in society.
The President of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelenskyi, signed the law on strengthening the responsibility of military personnel in martial law or combat situations.
From now on, responsibility for voluntarily leaving a military unit or place of service, desertion, voluntary leaving the battlefield or refusal to act with weapons, disobedience and failure to comply with combat orders has been increased, according to the website of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine.
On December 13, the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine adopted the law “On Amendments to the Criminal Code of Ukraine, the Code of Ukraine on Administrative Offenses and other legislative acts of Ukraine regarding the specifics of military service in conditions of martial law or in a combat situation” (registration number “8271”).
They have increased the responsibility of military personnel under the conditions of martial law or a combat situation. They are excluded from the possibility of imposing a milder punishment than provided by law and exemption from serving a probationary sentence. The level of sanctions for committing military administrative offenses has also been increased.
The Military Accountability Act: Reaction
On December 15, a petition appeared to Volodymyr Zelensky asking him to veto the bill on increasing the punishment of military personnel. More than 30,000 people signed it in just one day.
On December 19, the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine Valery Zaluzhnyi publicly supported the scandalous bill and called on the President to sign it.
He emphasized that he supports increased responsibility for voluntarily leaving a military unit or place of service, desertion, voluntary leaving the battlefield or refusal to act with weapons, disobedience and failure to comply with combat orders.
Zaluzhnyi noted that the army maintains discipline, and if gaps in the legislation do not ensure compliance, and “refusals” can pay a fine or receive a probationary sentence, it is unfair.