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Prosecutors launch probe of Tymoshenko, arrest her environment minister

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Dec. 16, 2010, 11:39 p.m. | Ukraine — by Kyiv Post

Yulia Tymoshenko near prosecutors office in Kyiv on Dec. 15.
© (Oleksandr Prokopenko)

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Prosecutors on Dec. 15 opened a criminal case against former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko for alleged misuse of public funds and abuse of power. The prosecutor’s press service also said Tymoshenko signed a promise not to leave the country. Tymoshenko called the criminal case against her the “continuation of a well-coordinated terror campaign against the opposition.”

Meanwhile, law enforcement agencies also detained former environment minister Heorhiy Filipchuk, who is being investigated over alleged abuse of office, the state prosecutor’s office said on Dec. 15.

Filipchuk is the third minister from the Tymoshenko government to face criminal charges since her opponent Viktor Yanukovych came to power in February.

His detention followed an audit into the previous cabinet’s affairs ordered by Yanukovich’s allies which they say has revealed misuse of funds obtained from selling carbon emission rights under the Kyoto protocol.

Prosecutors this month charged former Interior Minister Yuriy Lutsenko with abuse of office.

Tymoshenko’s economy minister Bohdan Danylyshyn was detained in the Czech Republic in October on similar charges.

Tymoshenko has to appear again before prosecutors on Dec. 20, this time with a lawyer.
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