DENMARK GRANTS ASYLUM TO UKRAINIAN MINISTER OF JAILED PREMIER TYMASHENKO

Kyiv Post, Ukraine, on February 18, 2013, published a Reuters report that Valery Ivashchenko, who served in Tymoshenko’s second cabinet in 2009 and 2010, is the latest of her allies to flee Ukraine since President Viktor Yanukovich came to power three years ago. Excerpts below:

Denmark has granted political asylum to a Ukrainian former acting defence minister who served under jailed ex-premier Yulia Tymoshenko, a Danish government source said.

Valery Ivashchenko, who served in Tymoshenko’s second cabinet in 2009 and 2010, is the latest of her allies to flee Ukraine since President Viktor Yanukovich came to power three years ago.

The Danish official, who requested anonymity, said Ivashchenko was granted a residence permit to stay in Denmark.

Ivashchenko was jailed in April 2012 for five years after being found guilty of abusing his powers in privatising a Black sea repair facility – a charge which he said at the time was politically motivated. He was released in August of that year when the jail term was converted into a conditional sentence.

After Yanukovich became president in 2010, Tymoshenko and a number of her allies in opposition faced corruption-related charges in what she has described as a campaign of repression.

One of her former interior ministers, Yuri Lutsenko, was sentenced two years ago to four years in prison on charges of embezzlement and abuse office.

Tymoshenko’s husband Olexander and another ally, former Economy Minister Bohdan Danylyshin, have both fled to the Czech Republic where they have been granted asylum.

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