KIEV, April 25 (Itar-Tass) — Ukraine’s commissioner for human rights confirmed that former prime minister Yulia Timoshenko, who is serving a seven year prison term for abuse of office during gas negotiations with Russia, was beaten at the Kachanovskaya penal colony in Kharkov, eastern Ukraine, the leader of the opposition party Front of Changes, MP Arseny Yatsenyuk told a news conference on Wednesday.
“The commissioner for human rights, Nina Karpacheva, made public her statement saying that last Tuesday her representative visited the convict in prison without any notification. It was confirmed that the ex-prime minister had bodily injuries,” he said.
Karpacheva demanded Ukraine’s prosecutor-general should institute a criminal case and dismiss those who used physical force against Timoshenko while taking her from prison to hospital. She also insisted that the head of the penitentiary service should urgently provide medical assistance to Timoshenko in compliance with the decision of the European Court of Human Rights.
Last Friday, Yulia Timoshenko went on hunger strike to protest against the beating by prison guards.
Her lawyer Sergei Vlasenko said he saw bruises on Timoshenko’s body.
“Timoshenko’s hunger strike demonstrates her protest against what is going on in the country and what is going on personally with her in prison,” her lawyer Sergei Vlasenko said.
In her letter, Timoshenko handed over to her layer she wrote that she was taken to a hospital by prison guards by force. They pulled her from the bed and when she began to defend herself she received a punch in the stomach and passed out.
The state penitentiary service denied this information.