During its session held on 23 January, the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe adopted a resolution regarding state of democracy in Ukraine. The gathering appealed to Ukraine’s authorities for excluding from the Criminal Code an article under which some members of Yulia Tymoshenko’s government had been charged and sentenced.
The text of the resolution approved by the Parliamentary Assembly is the first document in history allowing for sanctions against Ukraine. Only a day before, the project had been more toned down, but the alterations included a possibility of said sanctions if Kiev would not comply within “a reasonable period of time”.
The resolution titled “The functioning of democratic institutions in Ukraine” calls on Ukraine’s authorities to remove from the Criminal Code an article under which former members of Yulia Tymoshenko’s government, and the ex-PM herself, were charged and sentenced. The Assembly addresses directly President Yanukovych, and “asks that all charges based on
these articles against former government members be dropped”. Oleg Voloshyn , Director General of Information Policy Directorate in Ukrainian MFA, commented on the resolution during his stay at the Davos Conference: “The statutory regulations of the Council allow for only but two forms of sanctions: depriving a whole country’s delegation ,including internal opposition, of right to vote, and totally expelling a country from the Council”. In relation to this, Voloshyn asked ”Which of them would affect [President] Yanukovych directly? Which would affect Judge Kireyev (Rodion Kireyev sentenced Tymoshenko for 7 years of prison – ed.note)? None of them.”
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Translated by KD