Open Letter from the Ukrainian Helsinki Human Rights Union regarding the release of Yulia Tymoshenko


On 9 April UHHRU addressed an appeal to Ukraine’s President to party Yulia Tymoshenko. On 11 April the President told journalists in Mykolaiv that “until the court proceedings in the Tymoshenko cases are completed, the question of a pardon cannot be considered”.

However UHHRU applied for a pardon only in the “gas” case for which Ms Tymoshenko is serving a sentence and where all proceedings have been concluded. In the other cases the court proceedings have not ended and effectively cannot be held due to the poor state of health of Ms Tymoshenko who is being kept in hospital. At the present time her state of health requires constant monitoring and observance in a specialized medical establishment with this being difficult to provide effectively in penal conditions.

We consider that in accordance with the State’s declared position on European integration and respect for human rights, Yulia Tymoshenko should be released. Provision of proper medical assistance and the full exercising of the standards for a fair trial are possible only if she is free.

Therefore, impelled by principles of compassion, humanity and affirmation of human rights we call on the President of Ukraine to accede to our application to pardon Yulia Tymoshenko over the “gas” case and on the courts to choose a restraint measure with respect to Yulia Tymoshenko which does not entail deprivation of liberty.

On behalf of the Ukrainian Helsinki Human Rights Union,

Yevhen Zakharov, Head of the Board

Arkady Bushchenko, Executive Director

UHHRU is a nongovernmental, non-profit-making and non-political nationwide association of civic organizations. In accordance with Item 2.1 of its Charter, the objectives of UHHRU activities include promoting the practical implementation of Ukraine’s human rights obligations.

Pursuant to Item 2.3 of the UHHRU Charter, “In order to achieve the objective and tasks as expressed by the Charter, the Association has the right 2.3.2 to put forward its proposals to state authorities and bodies of local self-government  , 2.3.7 to put forward initiatives on various issues of public life.”

UHHRU activity is aimed at affirming

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