EPP President: I am very concerned about the developments in Ukraine
"I am very concerned about the developments in Ukrainian politics after the recent Presidential elections. These negative developments have become systematic in nature and are threatening the rule of law and fundamental human rights and civil liberties.
First, an unconstitutional majority and a new coalition were established in the Ukrainian Parliament, and as the result the government, which lacks legitimacy was formed.
Second, there are increasing violations of the freedom of press and the revival of censorship resulting in strong criticism from a number of respectable international media organizations including "Reporters without Frontiers" and "International Freedom of Expression Exchange".
Third, the local elections were suspended by the new majority in the Parliament. Forth, there are systematic violations of opposition rights. And, finally, there are clear evidences of political manipulations of the criminal justice system from the side of the Ukrainian authorities aimed at intimidation and harassment of the opposition, where the old politically motivated case against Yulia Tymoshenko has just been opened.
Over last 5 years we used to see Ukraine as an example of democracy in the region. It is very sad and disturbing to observe how the democratic achievements of the previous government are being destroyed and neglected by current authorities.
I call on Ukrainian President Victor Yanukovych to stop the violation of democratic principles. Such practice moves Ukraine away from the European Union. Furthermore, I urge the Ukrainian President to develop a constructive dialogue with opposition leaders in democratic manner.”
On May 12, Yulia Tymoshenko was handed notice by the Prosecutor General’s Office of the reopening of a criminal case into allegations of bribery of judges of Ukraine's Supreme Court. The case was opened in May 2004 and closed in January 2005.