Ukraine has entered a new year, but the epic case of imprisoned opposition leader Yulia Tymoshenko unfolds with no end in sight – haunting the nation as well as sabotaging its prospects of closer integration with the European Union.
Days after EU officials expressed shock that the former prime minister was transferred from a Kyiv detention center to a prison in Kharkiv just before the New Year, opposition lawmakers accused President Viktor Yanukovych on Jan. 10 of trying to “kill” their leader. The administration’s chief of staff, Serhiy Lyovochkin, denied the charges. “Of course, this is not true,” Lyovochkin told reporters.
Tymoshenko’s Batkivshchyna party said that she lost consciousness late on Jan. 6 after taking medication provided by “Gestapo” doctors at the Kachanivska penal colony. “They came to her not to treat her, but to fulfill the next cynical order by the government and to report about the stable state of health of Tymoshenko whom President Yanukovych is trying to kill behind the barbed wire,” the party said in a Jan. 10 statement.