National Police of Ukraine

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National Police of Ukraine
Ukrainian: Національна поліція України
Patch of Ukrainian National Police.jpg
Patch of the National Police
Ukrainian National Police logo.png
Emblem of the National Police
Badge of National Police of Ukraine.png
Badge of the National Police
Agency overview
Formed 4 July, 2015
Preceding agency Militsiya (1917–2015)
Employees 4,500 (October 2015)[1][2]
Legal personality Governmental: Government agency
Jurisdictional structure
National agency Ukraine
UA National Police introduction status.png
National Police of Ukraine introduction status by region:
     - Active
     - Officer training ongoing
     - Officer selection ongoing
     - Operations planned
Size 603,629 km²
Population 44 million (approx.)
Governing body Government of Ukraine
Constituting instrument Law of Ukraine on "National Police"
General nature
Operational structure
Overviewed by Ministry of Internal Affairs
Headquarters 10, Akademika Bohomoltsa st.
Kiev, Ukraine
Minister responsible Arsen Avakov, Internal Affairs Minister
Agency executive position vacant, Chief
Patrol cars Toyota Prius
Hyundai Sonata
Official website

The National Police of Ukraine (Ukrainian: Національна поліція України, Natsional'na politsiya Ukrainy), commonly shortened to Police (Ukrainian: Поліція, Politsiya), is the national police service of Ukraine. It was formed on 3 July 2015, as part of the post-Euromaidan reforms launched by Ukrainian president Petro Poroshenko.[3] It is overseen by the Ministry of Internal Affairs.[4]


Prior to 3 July 2015, law enforcement in Ukraine was carried out directly by the Ministry of Internal Affairs as the militsiya. Plans to reform the Ministry, which was widely known to be corrupt, had been advocated by various governments and parties, but these plans were never realised.[3][5]

In the aftermath of the 2013–2014 Euromaidan movement and subsequent revolution, the need for reform was acknowledged by all parties. Parliamentary elections were held in October 2014, after which all five of the parties that formed the governing coalition pledged to reform the ministry and create a new national police service.[6]

As part of the reforms, the Minister of Internal Affairs, Arsen Avakov, presented plans to reduce the number of police officers in Ukraine to 160,000 by the end of 2015.[7] The reform plans started with the combination of the ministry's current State Auto Inspection (DAI) and the patrol service in the country's capital Kiev in summer 2015.[8][9] This new police patrol received funding from various countries.[10] 2,000 new policemen and women, picked from 33,000 applicants, were recruited to initiate the new service in Kiev. Officers were American-trained.[10] Members of the previous force were eligible for recruitment if they met the age criteria and went through training again.[11]

Upon the launch of Kiev's new patrol police on 4 July 2015, the militsiya ceased all patrolling but continued working at precincts and administrative offices.[12][2][10] After that the new police patrol was rolled out across Ukraine.[10] It was formally established as National Police on 2 September 2015.[4] In late September 2015 2,000 new policemen and women were covering Kiev, 800 Kharkiv and 1,700 Odessa and Lviv.[1][2] At the same time the militsiya was 152,000 officers strong.[13]

Structure and branches[edit]

The National Police is divided into a number of different services. Each municipal force has internal subdivisions. This leaves the police service with a large number of specialised branches which can more specifically target certain types of crime and apply more expert knowledge in the investigation of cases relating to their area of policing. In addition to these specific groups, all police forces retain a majority of officers for the purpose of patrol duty and general law enforcement.

A typical municipal force will contain the following subdivisions:

  • Criminal Police (Кримінальна поліція) - investigation and prevention of serious and violent crime
    • The criminal police may include specislised teams such as anti-drugs and financial crime prevention units
    • All forces have crime scene and forensics units
  • Patrol Police (Патрульна поліція) - general law enforcement operations, traffic policing and patrol duty (includes riot police divisions)

In addition, the following special units exist:

  • Security Police (Поліція охорони) - Successor to the State Security Administration of Ukraine and tasked with providing close protection to senior government officials nationwide.
  • Special Police (Спеціальна поліція) - Tasked with keeping order in areas with special status and/or affected by natural or ecological disaster.
  • Rapid Operational Response Unit (KORD) (Корпус Оперативно-Раптової Дії) - Tactical response unit, tasked with resolution of stand-off situations involving hostages and/or heavily armed suspects. Also tasked with providing a tactical support function to other divisional officers.
  • Pre-trial Investigative Services (Органи досудового розслідування) - Representatives of the National Investigative Bureau, Tax Authorities and Security Services, tasked with investigating crime.

Municipal forces[edit]

Territorial Force Date of formation
Oblast / Municipality Police Force
COA of Kyiv Kurovskyi.svg City of Kiev Patch of Kiev Patrol Police.png Kiev Patrol Police 4 July 2015[14]
Coat of arms of Lviv.svg City of Lviv Patch of Lviv Patrol Police.png Lviv Patrol Police 23 August 2015[15]
Coat of Arms of Odessa.svg City of Odessa Patch of Odessa Patrol Police.png Odessa Patrol Police 25 August 2015[16]
Kharkiv-town-herb.svg City of Kharkiv Patch of Kharkiv Patrol Police.png Kharkiv Patrol Police 26 September 2015[1]


Officers wear a camera that is constantly monitoring their performances.[2] The resulting videos are posted on social media and broadcast on a reality TV show.[2]


Picture Make and model Country of origin Use Quantity Notes
Ukrainian police patrol.jpg Toyota Prius Japan
Patrol car 1,568 General purpose patrol car.
Supplied by Japan in return for Ukrainian emissions permits under the Kyoto Protocol.
2012 Hyundai Sonata GLS -- 10-28-2011.jpg Hyundai Sonata South Korea
South Korea
Patrol car 110 Highway patrol car.
Former taxis operated under the SkyTaxi brand by Kiev's Boryspil International Airport. Owned by the state and transferred to the Police as surplus to SkyTaxi's requirements.
Isuzu D-Max (first generation) (front), Serdang.jpg Isuzu D-Max Japan
Patrol car 38


According to Professor Oleksandra Ponomariva of the University of Kiev's Institute of Journalism, the correct Ukrainian language term for a police officer is 'politsiyant' (поліціянт). This is in contrast to the term 'politseysky' (поліцейський), a loan word from the Russian language, commonly used to refer to an officer of the National Police.

Ranks are rarely used by the public when addressing police officers in Ukraine; it is more common to hear the term Pan (Пан) (female - Pani (Пані) - Ukrainian for mister/miss - used to refer to police officers. Qualifying terms such as 'ofitser' (офіцер) or 'politseysky' (поліцейський) may also be used in conjunction with these forms of address.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c High hopes in Kharkiv as new police patrol officers sworn in, Ukraine Today (26 September 2015)
  2. ^ a b c d e New-style police have key role in Ukraine, BBC News (25 September 2015)
  3. ^ a b "Ukraine launches Western-style police force to set a marker for reform". Yahoo News. Reuters. 6 July 2015. Retrieved 21 July 2015. 
  4. ^ a b National Police established in Ukraine, Interfax Ukraine (2 September 2015)
  5. ^ "In Ukraine, they want to create 5 police departments instead of the militsiya" (in Ukrainian). Ukrainian Independent Information Agency. 10 January 2013. Retrieved 10 December 2014. 
  6. ^ Hankevych, Roman (21 November 2014). "Five parties signed the coalition agreement at night" (in Ukrainian). Retrieved 9 December 2014. 
  7. ^ "Avakov wants to reduce the amount of police officers to 160 thousand". Ukrayinska Pravda (in Ukrainian). 10 December 2014. Retrieved 10 December 2014. 
  8. ^ "Ukraine launches western-style police force to set a marker for reform". Ukrayinska Pravda. 24 December 2014. Retrieved 25 December 2014. 
  9. ^ "Avakov: soon there won't be a DAI in Kyiv – who is ready to be a patrol officer?". 7 July 2015. Retrieved 7 July 2015. 
  10. ^ a b c d "Ukraine tackles graft with new US-style police force". Interaksyon. Agence France-Presse. 6 July 2015. Retrieved 21 July 2015. 
  11. ^ Varadarajan, Tunku (3 September 2015). "Talent from Tbilisi". Politico. 
  12. ^ Gessen, Masha (8 September 2015). "The Cops Who Would Save a Country". Foreign Policy. 
  13. ^ Reform Watch - Oct. 1, 2015, Kyiv Post (2 October 2015)
  14. ^ Wesolowsky, Tony (4 August 2015). "A Force For Change: Kyiv's New Cops". Radio Free Europe. 
  15. ^ "Brand new police start work in Lviv". 23 August 2015. 
  16. ^ "President launched patrol police in Odesa: New police in Ukraine is a symbol of revolutionary reforms". 25 August 2015. 

External links[edit]