German doctors persuade Tymoshenko to stop hunger strike, says deputy health minister

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Nov. 15, 2012, 6:51 p.m. | Ukraine — by Interfax-Ukraine

A supporter of Ukrainian opposition holds a poster with jailed former prime minister Yulia Tymoshenko during a rally in central Kyiv on October 26, 2012.

German doctors have persuaded former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko to end her hunger strike, Ukrainian First Deputy Health Minister Raisa Moiseyenko has said.

"It has been agreed that Yulia Volodymyrivna [Tymoshenko] will take food. Food has already been delivered to the ward," she told reporters on Thursday.

Moiseyenko also said that Tymoshenko had agreed to undergo a laboratory examination.

"Laboratory tests have currently been almost finished… Her condition corresponds to 17 days of hunger strike," she said.

She said that German and Ukrainian doctors were currently discussing issues related to the patient's recovery from the regime of the hunger strike, and then they plan to discuss rehabilitation activities.

"We hope that the regime of rehabilitation, a planned and gradually recovery will be resumed," Moiseyenko said.

The head doctor of Ukrzaliznytsia's Central Clinical Hospital No. 5, Mykhailo Afanasyev, in turn, said that the time needed to remove the patient from the starvation regime was almost equal to the period of the hunger strike.

He said that Tymoshenko was currently in a condition close to that when she was delivered to hospital on May 9 after a 22-day hunger strike.

Doctors also declined to say whether Tymoshenko's condition will help her attend the hearing of the UESU case on November 23.

"Let's wait until the 23rd," Moiseyenko said.

At the same time, Tymoshenko's defense lawyer, Serhiy Vlasenko, claimed that she had not started taking food.

As reported, Tymoshenko announced a hunger strike on October 29 in protest against alleged fraud in Ukraine's parliamentary elections.

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