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Merkel may announce boycott of Euro 2012 in Ukraine unless Timoshenko is released - Spiegel

April 29, 2012, 17:13 UTC+3
Timoshenko went on a hunger strike on April 20 after personnel of the Kharkov penitentiary used force against her during the transfer to the hospital
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Photo ITAR-TASS

Photo ITAR-TASS

BERLIN, April 29 (Itar-Tass) —— German Federal Chancellor Angela Merkel says Euro 2012 matches in Ukraine may be boycotted, the Spiegel weekly reported on Sunday.

She recommends German ministers not to attend matches played by the national soccer team in Lvov and Kharkov unless ex-Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Timoshenko is released from custody before June 8, the day the championship begins.

Timoshenko went on a hunger strike on April 20 after personnel of the Kharkov penitentiary used force against her during the transfer to the hospital.

Timoshenko is serving a seven-year-term in Kharkov. The court sentenced her on October 11, 2011, 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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