war crimes in Ukraine

The Tribunal for Putin (T4P) global initiative was set up in response to the all-out war launched by Russia against Ukraine in February 2022.

Writers and intellectuals call for the trials of Tymoshenko and Lutsenko to be stopped

They say that the events of the last weeks have highlighted the political nature of the trials. “The Tymoshenko case concerns each of us. The Rubicon is here and now. If the regime crosses it, by tomorrow they will be trying many of us”.


A number of well-known writers and intellectuals have called on the authorities to terminate the prosecutions of former Prime Minister and leader of the Batkivshchyna Party, Yulia Tymoshenko and free from custody the former Minister of Internal Affairs, Yury Lutsenko and “other political prisoners”.

The appeal was read out at the end of last week outside the Pechersky District Court in Kyiv where Tymoshenko and Lutsenko are being tried by the poet and civic figure, Dmytro Pavlychko.

“The first weeks of the trial of Yulia Tymoshenko have shown that it has nothing to do with justice. This is not a trial or imitation of one, it is a farce where the final act should be the imprisonment of Yulia Tymoshenko – not as a person, but as the opposition, as the most powerful figure at present who is opposing the regime and its plans”, Dmytro Pavlychko said.

“The Tymoshenko case concerns each of us. The Rubicon is here and now. If the regime crosses it, by tomorrow they will be trying many of us”.

The appeal has been signed by: Yury Andrukhovych; Volodymyr Basylevsky; Nina Bichuya; Oleh Chornohuz ; Larisa Denysenko; Anatoly Dimarov; Ivan Dzyuba; Bohdan Horyn; Serhiy Hrabovsky;; Irena Karpa; Mykola Knyazhytsky; Ihor Losev; Levko Lukyanenko; Yury Mushketyk; Dmytro Pavlychko; Myroslav Popovych; Iren Rozdobudko; Mykola Ryabchuk; Volodymyr Serhiychuk; Mykhailo Slaboshpytsky; Valery Shevchuk; Vasyl Shklyar; Yury Shchebak and Serhiy Zhadan.

The signatories stress that not all of them voted for Tymoshenko (who was narrowly beaten by Yanukovych in February 2010) or are her political supporters.  They are however united in their conviction that the trial of the former Prime Minister is of a purely political nature.

They call on the public to not be indifferent and stress that imprisoned opposition means an uncontrolled regime.

“The dismantling of democracy which is taking place before our eyes will close Ukraine’s path to Europe while opening still wider the eastern gates of our Soviet past”.

The appeal also calls for freedom of speech to be restored and for an end to news censorship on television and to manipulative zombifying methods on political talk shows. They also demand that the authorities ensure honest parliamentary elections next year on the basis of the current law, and not one written to serve the needs of one party. 

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