• Topics / Politics and human rights
• Topics / The right to a fair trial
OSCE representatives convinced that Tymoshenko’s imprisonment is politically motivated
The Vice-President of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe Parliamentary Assembly, Walburga Habsburg Douglas (Sweden), and another member of the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly, Asa Lindestam (Sweden) were prevented last Monday from meeting with former Prime Minister and opposition leader Yulia Tymoshenko.
They explained in an interview on TVi on Thursday evening that the two, both women but from different political parties, had decided to visit the former Prime Minister because of concern about the grounds for her prosecution.
Ukrainian News reported that they stated after leaving the Colony that the Swedish embassy in Ukraine had received an official response from Ukraine’s Foreign Ministry saying that the visit was not permitted.
Ms Douglas told TVi that the authorities’ refusal only confirmed their concern regarding the political motivation of Tymoshenko’s conviction.
The women said that the situation was inconceivable in Sweden since their country does not have political prisoners, however they believe that a request from foreign officials to visit a prisoner in Sweden would not be turned down.
“Yulia Tymoshenko was trying to organize the opposition and her treatment now demonstrates that she is not an ordinary prisoner. She can’t use the telephone, cannot meet with foreign guests and she is under 24-hour surveillance. If as the government asserts she is not a political prisoner, then I would ask why are we not allowed to meet with her?”