Tymoshenko: Ukraine in 'Middle Ages'

Feb. 10, 2012 at 9:40 AM

WASHINGTON, Feb. 10 (UPI) -- Nobody in Ukraine is safe from the human rights violations committed by law enforcement officials, the daughter of a jailed opposition leader said.

Eugenia Tymoshenko, daughter of opposition leader and former Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko, said Ukraine is "in the Middle Ages" when it comes to its human rights record.

"Nobody in our country is safe from human rights violations and torture by our law enforcement system -- not students, not politicians, not businessmen, not lawyers," said in a statement.

Yulia Tymoshenko is serving a seven-year prison sentence after a conviction on charges she abused her authority in a 2009 natural gas deal with Russia's Gazprom. Her allies say the charges are politically motivated. This week, lawmakers in Ukraine stopped a measure that would have decriminalized the part of the legal code by which Tymoshenko was sent to jail.

Her daughter says Yulia Tymoshenko is being mistreated in prison.

"This horror can suddenly come to your life and you will be alone, helpless and defenseless before the ruthless government machine that is trying to unfairly and forcibly destroy you," she said.

The Ukrainian government denies the allegations.

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