Editor’s Note: The following is an Aug. 5 statement issued by the Ukrainian Canadian Congress, in which the organization expresses its dismay with what international institutions have labeled a politically motivated arrest of opposition leader and former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko.
“The government of Ukraine is pursuing what appears to be politically-motivated, selective justice in a deliberate and systematic program to remove political opposition. This is another step away from democracy," stated Ukrainian Canadian Congress President Paul Grod. "Today's arrest of Tymoshenko is another in an ever-growing list of violations of human rights, democracy and the rule of law which have been regressing under the Yanukovych government."
Despite numerous pronouncements by the Government of Ukraine to the contrary, there is abundant and growing evidence that Ukraine is reverting to an authoritarian model of governance as the government moves to systematically reverse the democratic gains made by the Orange Revolution.
"The international community cannot sit on its hands as democratic freedoms are being eroded in Ukraine," stated Grod. "We have formally asked the Government of Canada to use all diplomatic tools at its disposal to communicate Canada's displeasure with the anti-democratic developments in Ukraine and call for her immediate release."
The UCC has repeatedly requested that Canada use all of its influence within the Euro-Atlantic community and Euro-Atlantic agencies to maintain pressure on the Yanukovych government to respect democracy and human rights. Furthermore we have called upon the Government of Canada to ensure that any Canada-Ukraine free trade agreement be contingent upon Ukrainian government commitments to respecting democracy and human rights.
The Kyiv Post is hosting comments to foster lively public debate through the Disqus system. Criticism is fine, but stick to the issues. Comments that include profanity or personal attacks will be removed from the site. The Kyiv Post will ban flagrant violators. If you think that a comment or commentator should be banned, please flag the offending material.
Web links to Kyiv Post material are allowed provided that they contain a URL hyperlink to the
www.kyivpost.com material and a maximum 500-character extract of the story. Otherwise, all materials
contained on this site are protected by copyright law and may not be reproduced without the prior
written permission of Public Media at email@example.com
All information of the Interfax-Ukraine news agency placed on this web site is designed for internal
use only. Its reproduction or distribution in any form is prohibited without a written permission of