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Yanukovich asks govt, intelligence to help free Ukrainians in Libya

September 20, 2011, 16:40 UTC+3
Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovich has instructed Prime Minister Nikolai Azarov and the head of the Foreign Intelligence Service
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KIEV, September 20 (Itar-Tass) —— Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovich has instructed Prime Minister Nikolai Azarov and the head of the Foreign Intelligence Service, Gregory Illyashov, to take all measures "to protect the legitimate rights and interests of Ukrainian citizens, detained in Libya," the presidential press-service said on Tuesday.

About two dozen Ukrainians are in the hands of the armed forces of the Transitional National Council (TNC) in Libya. They are accused of allegedly fighting on the side of Gaddafi troops. The Ukrainians have denied the charges.

The head of the presidential staff, Sergei Lyovochkin, stated that "measures to secure the release of the Ukrainian citizens in Libya is under the special control of the president."

Yanukovych also instructed the government to study the possibility of providing humanitarian assistance to Libya and arranging for treatment in Ukraine of citizens who suffered during the conflict between the supporters and opponents of Gaddafi.

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