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Ukrainian MP says Savchenko expelled from Rada committee for improper political behavior

December 23, 2016, 16:42 UTC+3 KIEV

She lacks political experience, the Ukrainian politician explained

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Nadezhda Savchenko

Nadezhda Savchenko

© AP Photo/Sergei Chuzavkov

KIEV, December 23 /TASS/. Nadezhda Savchenko, a Ukrainian MP and an ex-pilot, has been expelled from the Parliamentary Committee for National Defense and Security fellow committee member Andrey Teteruk said on Friday.

"The Committee for National Defense and Security unanimously voted for expelling Nadezhda Savchenko from its ranks at its last meeting. Rada is to stage a vote on resolution No.5543, which we have signed, shortly," Teteruk, who is an MP from the People’s Front parliamentary faction, said in an interview with Channel 24 TV on Friday.

He explained that the deputies disagreed with Savchenko’s purported inappropriate political behavior.

"We believe that she acted on her own free will and declare that her actions do not reflect our parliament’s official stance. There is a sweeping opinion that she lacks political experience, however, this does not justify her remarks made in favor of the terrorist organizations’ chieftains," Teteruk concluded.

Savchenko in 'exile'

Savchenko’s trips, unauthorized by the government in Kiev, to the self-proclaimed Donetsk and Lugansk People’s Republics (DPR and LPR) have ignited serious backlash against her in Ukraine. Late in October, Savchenko wrote a letter to the leaders of Ukraine’s Batkivshchina party of Yulia Timoshenko requesting that they expel her from the party’s ranks. She finally quit Batkivshchina on December 15. Later, Rada members stripped her of her status as Ukraine’s envoy to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe.

In her speech in Berlin on Thursday, Savchenko said she was "suffering political losses." "My political views and the views of my fellow party members have diverged. That would have happened, sooner or later, irrespective of my trips to Minsk or Moscow," Savchenko stressed.

The ex-pilot convicted in Russia and pardoned by President Vladimir Putin said that she would focus exclusively on her work as an MP and on domestic policy.

"PACE re-elects its lineup and elects new members every year. I do not know how this procedure takes place," Savchenko said when asked by TASS.

"If I am not re-elected, I will still have a great deal of work as a Verkhovna Rada representative," Savchenko stated.

She added that she would speak openly about Ukraine’s external and internal enemies and scourges such as corruption and ineffective reforms.

"Ukraine conducts many sham reforms, which are basically ineffective," the Ukrainian MP said.

A Russian court found Savchenko, a former Ukrainian pilot, guilty of being involved in the killing of Russian TV reporters Igor Kornelyuk and Anton Voloshin, and of illegally crossing the Russian border.

On March 22, a court in Donetsk, a town in Russia’s southern Rostov region, sentenced her to 22 years in a general penal colony.

At the request of Kornelyuk and Voloshin’s relatives, President Putin pardoned her on May 25. A jet flew her to Kiev shortly after her release.

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