The Law of Ukraine “On Intelligence” Is the Legislative Basis for Building a Modern Foreign Intelligence System


The Law incorporates best practices in the field of legal support for intelligence agencies of the EU and NATO member states. But above all, it is aimed at improving the efficiency of the Ukrainian intelligence in order to protect national interests.

Consolidation of the powers of intelligence agencies in various spheres of their activities within the framework of the new modular legislative act was extremely important in the conditions of the Russian Federation's aggression against Ukraine. According to the Chairman of the Foreign Intelligence Service of Ukraine, Lieutenant General Valerii Kondratiuk, the Law provides a comprehensive, transparent and clear approach to regulating the sphere of intelligence activity of Ukraine.

“The Foreign Intelligence Service has made extraordinary efforts to adapt the model of activity and composition of the intelligence body to the new conditions that have developed in view of the implementation of our country's course of integration into the European and Euro-Atlantic space. And it is the adopted Law of Ukraine that has become the basic legislative basis for the development of a modern system of foreign intelligence”, Valerii Kondratiuk said.

Regarding some aspects of the Law of Ukraine “On Intelligence”, the following main provisions should be pointed out.

First of all, at the legislative level, an intelligence community has been created, a circle of entities whose activities directly or indirectly relate to the protection of Ukraine's state interests from external threats. The Law determines the role and place of individual subjects of this community in the implementation of tasks to ensure the external security of Ukraine, as well as the principles of their interaction.

The Law clearly delineates the powers and responsibilities of intelligence agencies by focusing their efforts on priority spheres of national security, eliminating duplication of their tasks and functions, and at the same time providing a comprehensive approach to the implementation by intelligence agencies of the priority tasks of intelligence activities in the relevant spheres.

The long-awaited separation of the mechanism of conducting intelligence activities from the system of operational and investigative activities took place. Prior to the Law's entry into force, the conduct of intelligence activities, which were primarily aimed at obtaining information, was regulated by the Criminal Procedure Code of Ukraine and the Law of Ukraine “On Investigative Activity”. Regulation of the specifics of intelligence activities was incorrectly included within the framework of anti-criminal legislation and required changes, which were reflected in the Law of Ukraine “On Intelligence”.

For the first time in the national history, the social and legal status is determined at the legislative level, as well as the relevant guarantees, for persons who confidentially cooperate with intelligence agencies (compensation, benefits, various types of assistance, etc.).

The Law of Ukraine “On Intelligence” is a comprehensive legislative act, which provides for amendments to more than 25 other legislative acts.

It is also important that the norms of the Law strengthen democratic civilian control over the intelligence segment of the national security and defense sector, primarily parliamentary and civil. This will contribute to a clear understanding of the tasks, methods and techniques of the intelligence community, as well as the ability to properly estimate the results of this activity.

With the entry into force of the Law of Ukraine “On Intelligence”, the reform of the security and defense sector in terms of building national intelligence does not end. This Law is a proper basis for issuing other legal acts (Presidential decrees, resolutions of the Government of Ukraine, departmental orders and directives), which will detail each specific aspect of the work of intelligence agencies, other members of the intelligence community, as well as legal guarantees for intelligence officers, members of their families and persons who confidentially cooperate with these bodies.