An architect of Ukraine’s 2004 pro-democracy Orange Revolution who was instantly recognizable by her crown of braids, Tymoshenko was sentenced to seven years in prison in October 2011 after being convicted of exceeding her powers as premier while negotiating a gas contract with Russia.
Tymoshenko has said her jailing was intended to keep her out of politics and that her rights were violated when she was first jailed in August 2011. The court agreed unanimously that her jailing was “for other reasons” than those permissible by law.
“It was not a criminal prosecution. There was another aim of that prosecution and everyone knows that that was a politically motivated prosecution,” said Serhiy Vlasenko, Tymoshenko’s lawyer. He said the court found “the prosecution of Mrs. Tymoshenko in Ukraine had nothing to do with the law, had nothing to do with democratic standards, had nothing to do with a criminal prosecution.”