Proposal to legalise pornography in Ukraine


Eastern Europe


The shadow of girls rescued from a cyber sex den are seen in this photo taken at Preda Foundation office. The girls were forced to produce pornography online. Photo AFP, Ted Aljibe

The Ukrainian Parliament is working on a draft law to decriminalise pornography.

Currently, pornography is strictly forbidden and regulated, Epravda writes. Sending a nude picture is considered a distribution, and even storing a sexually explicit photo on one's phone can classify as owning pornography.

Anyone producing and distributing pornography risks a fine of up to 68,000 UAH (about 1,600 euros) or a prison sentence of up to three years.

When the violation of the pornography ban involves adults and minors, the sentences are even higher.

Deputy Yaroslav Zheleznyak from the Voice faction called on his colleagues to sign the law and "relieve law enforcement agencies from control purchases or webcam models." Zheleznyak is also the initiator of the bill.

Epravda writes that two articles of the criminal code are to be changed: Article 301, which deals with the import, production and distribution of pornography, and Article 302, which is about the organisation of "places of debauchery."

If the proposal becomes legislation, only the "distribution of pornographic content without the consent of the person depicted or the distribution of pornography among minors" will be illegal. Also, extreme pornography, which contains animals or even the bodies of deceased people, will not become legal. Article 302, on the other hand, will be abolished altogether.

The authors of the bill emphasise that the amendments do not apply to child pornography, either to the distribution or the production of it, Vechirniy Kyiv writes. These actions will remain illegal and forbidden at all times.

Forbidden types

The draft law argues that legalisation will improve the fight against forbidden types of pornography, Slovoproslovo writes. In addition, it can increase tax revenues as the sex industry will bring in money, initiator Zhleznyak said.


Especially the liberal and left-wing parties support the decriminalisation of pornography. The Voice party, which is also behind this initiative, is known for its "anti-family and simply immoral bills" Christians for Ukraine writes. Earlier, they pushed for the legalisation of cannabis, easier divorce regulations and support for same-sex marriage.

Last year already, several public organisations wrote a statement in which they express support for legalisation of pornography. At the time, they argued that erotic content could raise money for the defence of Ukraine.

Key problem

However, there are also critical voices. Slovoproslovo points out that questions will arise concerning control and supervision of compliance with the new standards. Also, pornography is harmful to society, and legalisation does not solve the key problem of addiction and easy access to materials by children and adolescents, the website writes.

Also, the Orthodox Church of Ukraine (OCU) is against the liberalisation of the attitude towards sexuality. The local Council wrote earlier in a statement that it worries about the legalisation of same-sex marriage and points out that the view of the church is that man is created by God, Who gave him life and a purpose. "Therefore, a person should not consider his own body, his life in various manifestations, including sexual relations with other people", the Council writes.

The church body adds that sexual relationships should be responsible and "should not be seen only as a way to satisfy one's urges." In addition, the representatives believe that "sinful urges [like same-sex relationships, ed] and their practical satisfaction are neither an innate feature of a certain person nor a variant of normal sexual behaviour."

The OCU also warned that God punishes those who commit evil but also those "who loudly or silently approve of it." Therefore, it called the Ukrainian government not to "depart from social morality."



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