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You're reading: Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty: Tymoshenko prosecution is a dead end

During the recent EU Eastern Partnership summit in Warsaw, Yanukovych seemingly got such an earful about the Tymoshenko trial that he didn’t even bother staying for the final delegates’ lunch, preferring to fly home instead.

This is nothing new. Ever since the Tymoshenko trial began on June 24, 2011, Western diplomats and politicians have expressed concern about Ukraine using selective justice to go after an inconvenient opposition figure. EU leaders have warned that the EU Free Trade Agreement currently under negotiation could be in jeopardy.

But all those supplications have fallen on deaf ears. Yanukovych invariably responds with platitudes about the independence of the courts. This would be nice if it were true. When the hunt for Tymoshenko began earlier this year, 12 criminal cases were opened against her. The government aggressively pursued four and finally settled on one — abuse of office.

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