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Ukraine official calls for veto of biometric ID law


Ukraine’s human rights commissioner has called upon the country’s president to veto Ukraine’s recently passed biometric identification law.

As reported last week by BiometricUpdate.com, Ukraine recently passed a law that ensures the introduction of biometric identification cards and biometric passports for international travel.

According to commissioner Valeriya Lutkovska, the approved wording of the bill “does not comply with the Constitution of Ukraine and European standards in the sphere of personal data protection, and might infringe on human rights and freedom.”

Lutkovska noted that the law does not comply with standards of the Council of Europe and the European Union and the law on access to public information, which “may result in there being unjustified restrictions on access to public information with reference to the confidentiality of personal data.”

The commissioner added that the bill introduces controls over personal data processing and intrudes into the free activity of people in charge of processing personal data using information and communication systems.

Lutkovska argues that the law does not conform with EU standards, despite the fact that the law was designed to aid adoption with EU immigration standards.

Under the law, national ID cards will be issued to everybody at birth and will be valid for 10 years. A unified state demographic register will also be set up to store each citizen’s basic personal information, according to the law.

Further, the country will issue new biometric passports to replace old Soviet-style passports. The passports for international travel will comply with International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) standards and contain electronic chips with personal information including name, signature, photograph and a person’s fingerprints.

The new document standard will be designed to eliminate ID fraud and thus increase border security. The registry may become accessible to all relevant European Union institutions, improving the time and cost efficiency of their work, including shortened border control procedures.

It is not expected that Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych will veto the bill.

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