Ivan Kandyba

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Ivan Kandyba (Ukrainian: Іван Кандиба) (June 7, 1930 - Nov. 8, 2002), was a Ukrainian lawyer, who achieved most fame by being a founding member of the Ukrainian Helsinki Group.

Early life[edit]

Ivan Kandyba was born into a Ukrainian peasant family in Poland. In 1945, his family was resettled in Ukraine. Kandyba attended law school in Lviv, graduating in 1953. Between 1953 and 1961, he served in the town of Hlynyany, Lviv oblast, as notary, lawyer, and judge.[1]

Political career[edit]

In February 1960, Kandyba met Levko Lukyanenko, who was also working as a lawyer. The two became friends, and Kandyba supported an idea on which Lukyanenko was working - the creation of an illegal Ukrainian Worker's and Peasant's Union (UWPU) (Ukrainian: Українська Робітничо-Селянська Спілка). This organization was discovered, and Kandyba was arrested.

In 1962 and again in 1967, Kandyba served a three year and one year term respectively as a political prisoner. Upon his release in 1976, Kandyba was not allowed to work in Lviv.[1]

Ukrainian Helsinki Group[edit]

Kandyba was one of the founders of the Ukrainian Helsinki Group (UHG) which was announced in November 1976 by Mykola Rudenko.

Membership in the UHG carried a political and personal price. Kandyba was not allowed to practice in Lviv. After a trip to Moscow, to meet with members of the Moscow Helsinki Group, terms of Kandyba's release were tightened, for example he had to be home at 8:00pm rather than the original 9:00pm.

In 1978 and 1980, Kandyba tried to emigrate to the United States, but was not granted an exit visa by the Soviet Authorities.

Second Arrest[edit]

On March 24, 1981, Kandyba was arrested for Anti Soviet Agitation and Propaganda. On August 24, 1981, he was sentenced to 10 years special punishment, and 5 years exile. He was incarceratd in the infamous VS-389/36-1 prison, where political prisoners from all over the Soviet Union were sent.[2]/He was labeled a repeat offender.

Because of his refusal to cooperate and insistence that he be acknowledged as a political prisoner, Kandyba was placed in isolation for 65 days on January 1, 1988.

On September 5, 1988, due to the call for his release by US President Ronald Reagan, Kandyba was pardoned and released.[1]

Continued Political Career[edit]

In 1990, Kandyba created and became head of the political association "State Independence of Ukraine".[3]

In 1993, Kandyba joined the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists, and continued to lobby for the legalization of that organization.[4]

On November 8, 2002, Ivan Kandyba died in Lviv at the age of 72

References[edit]