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You're reading: Yulia Tymoshenko defies authorities – from jail

The EU and US have demanded action from the Ukrainian authorities to end her abuse; the German, Austrian and Czech presidents have refused an invitation to attend a summit of central European leaders in Ukraine (https://www.kyivpost.com/news/politics/detail/126642/); and the opposition has blockaded parliament with the large placard “Yanukovych do not kill Yulia” for five days, preventing it from functioning (http://www.economist.com/blogs/easternapproaches/2012/04/ukrainian-politics. See photos and video: http://www.pravda.com.ua/photo-video/2012/04/26/6963506/).

If this were not enough, from jail, Tymoshenko continues to be a thorn in President Viktor Yanukovych’s side, and if the authorities thought they could silence her by imprisoning her they obviously under-estimated “Yulia.” As Der Spiegel wrote: “Tymoshenko, who is only 1.60 meters (5 feet 3 inches) tall but who is admiringly dubbed, even by her adversaries, as ‘the only man in Ukrainian politics,’ remains a thorn in his side” (http://www.spiegel.de/international/europe/0,1518,826417,00.html). The Kyiv Post’s editor, Brian Bonner, adds: “Even in prison while flat on her back, Yulia Tymoshenko can inflict damage on a Ukrainian president. The woman who has helped demolish two presidents politically – Leonid Kuchma and Viktor Yushchenko – is on her way to politically destroying a third one – Viktor Yanukovych.
The frail ex-Prime Minister is a human wrecking ball for all who get in her way, despite prison guards and bars” (https://www.kyivpost.com/news/opinion/op_ed/detail/126680/).

Therefore, her long interview in Ukraine’s premier weekly merits a closer look ( http://dt.ua/POLITICS/yuliya_timoshenko_z_hvoroyu_spinoyu,__ale_z_mitsnim_hrebtom-100889.html ). Tymoshenko is obviously well informed about current Ukrainian affairs and knows what is going on outside her prison cell. She fully supports the unification of opposition forces for the October elections in light of the threats facing Ukraine that she believes are worse than at any time in Ukraine’s last two decades. The authorities, she states, are making Ukrainians into “losers without historical memory, without national pride, without positive economic perspectives and [without] a European future.”

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