On February 3, the deputy secretary of the National Security and Defense Council of Ukraine, Maj. Gen. Serhiy Kryvonos, suggested the necessity to legalize private military companies (PMC) in Ukraine. According to the national security official, many Ukrainian soldiers – especially those coming from the frontlines in the Donbas – are unable find decent jobs upon their demobilization (UNIAN, February 3). The following day, National Deputy Olha Vasylevska-Smahliuk (representing the majority Servant of the People party), officially introduced a bill “On Military-Consultancy Activities,” de facto proposing to legalize national PMCs. The bill regulates terms and conditions under which Ukrainian PMCs are to operate (Rada.gov.ua, February 4).
The issue of legalizing PMCs in Ukraine became more pressing after 2014 (Russia’s annexation of Crimea and war in the Donbas). On April 3, 2015, the then-leader of the Right Sector organization, Dmytro Yarosh, working with members of PrivatBank (at the time, controlled by Ukrainian oligarch Ihor Kolomoisky), tried to prepare legislation (unsuccessfully) to create legal status for national PMCs (Ipress.ua, April 4, 2015).