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Ukrainian parliament refuses to ask president for ensuring Timoshenko treatment

March 23, 2012, 18:09 UTC+3

Timoshenko refused to begin therapy at the penitentiary and insisted on being moved to hospital

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KIEV, March 23 (Itar-Tass) — The Ukrainian Verkhovna Rada has refused to ask President Viktor Yanukovich for the immediate fulfillment of the European Court of Human Rights demand for therapy of ex-Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Timoshenko at a specialized clinic. The resolution gained support of 98 deputies, while no less than 150 votes were necessary.

Yulia Timoshenko Bloc deputy Sergei Vlasenko initiated the resolution. He reminded the parliament that Yanukovich had expressed his sympathy with Timoshenko many times but said he had no grounds for interfering. The appeal to the president would create such a ground, he added.

The European Court of Human Rights demanded on March 15 that the Ukrainian authorities must provide an appropriate therapy to Timoshenko at a specialized clinic.

Justice Minister Alexander Lavrinovich said that the only reason why Timoshenko was not receiving therapy recommended by Ukrainian and German physicians was her refusal to accept help.

In his words, a commission of Ukrainian and German doctors was formed after the examination of Timoshenko at the penitentiary and a treatment plan was drafted. “The penitentiary [where Timoshenko is serving her time] has all the necessary equipment, drugs and specialists from civilian hospitals for fulfilling eight out of ten items of the plan,” he said.

Lavrinovich said that Timoshenko refused to begin therapy at the penitentiary and insisted on being moved to hospital.

The Ukrainian State Penitentiary Service said that Timoshenko made another written refusal from therapy on Thursday. “Health Ministry physicians once again told Timoshenko in the presence of the penitentiary infirmary head that she needed treatment by highly skilled doctors [including the German] and that the penitentiary had the necessary medical equipment and drugs. Doctors warned the convict about personal responsibility for her health in the case of her refusal from recommended treatment.”

The service noted that Timoshenko had more than 50 times declined the offered medical checkups and laboratory tests and rejected therapy thrice in February-March.

The court sentenced Timoshenko on October 11, 2011, to seven years in prison for exceeding her authority in the signing of the gas contracts with Russia in 2009. She was also compelled to pay 1.51 billion hryvni (almost $200 million) to Neftegaz Ukrainy. 

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