August 15, 2011
The Australian Government has joined other members of the international community in expressing concern at the political manoeuvres in Ukraine involving the arrest of Yulia Tymoshenko, former Prime Minister of Ukraine.
In discussions with Office of the Minister of Foreign Affairs Kevin Rudd the Australian Federation of Ukrainian Organisations (AFUO) was informed that the Australian Government is deeply concerned with the current situation around the court proceedings and arrest of former Prime Minister of Ukraine Yulia Tymoshenko. The Australian Government raises doubts about the motives in the trial proceedings which contribute to the appearance of a politically-motivated prosecution.
Senior Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) officials have made representation the Embassy of Ukraine in Australia to relay these concerns. The Embassy is also well aware of concerns raised with the Australian Government. by the Australian Ukrainian community
The Australian Government has indicated it will continue to call on Ukrainian authorities to give consideration to Ms Tymoshenko’s immediate release, and ensure that her trial meets international standards of transparency and fairness. Australia, along with many other countries, will also closely monitor the legal proceedings.
AFUO Chairman Stefan Romaniw who is currently in Ukraine attended the court proceedings at the Perchesky Court in Kyiv on Wednesday and will again attend this week. Mr Romaniw relayed to Tymoshenko through her advocates the Australian Government’s and Australian Ukrainian community’s concerns and called for a fair and open trial process and her release.
“Anyone who has broken the law must face the consequences. We doubt the starting point of this trial is judicial. It is politically motivated.” Mr Romaniw said.
President Yanukovych’s silence in the matter is deafening and that’s a huge concern and only reinforces the issue that it is a politically motivated exercise .” Mr Romaniw said
The Office of Minister Rudd has indicated support for Mr Romaniw to note the Australian Government’s concerns in the course of his representations in Kyiv.
This will be done in a meeting in Kyiv tomorrow with senior leaders of Tymoshenko’s party and other meetings with Government officials this week.
Further information Stefan Romaniw +380 977 486 182