The European Parliament’s centre-right political group has joined Ukrainian opposition forces in condemning the Ukrainian Central Election Committee’s refusal to register imprisoned political leaders Yulia Tymoshenko and Yuri Lutsenko as candidates for the October parliamentary elections. Tymoshenko’s party, Batkivschyna (Fatherland), has appealed to the country’s Supreme Administrative Court over the administrative refusal to register the former prime minister and Lutsenko, the former interior minister, as the party’s parliamentary candidates, the Ukrainian News website reported yesterday (13 August). Tymoshenko and Lutsenko were sentenced last year to seven and four years, respectively, for abuse of power. Tymoshenko led the 2004 Orange Revolution protests that derailed current President Viktor Yanukovich’s first bid for presidency. The former prime minister says she is the victim of a vendetta by Yanukovich.
Ukraine’s Central Election Commission on Wednesday refused to register jailed ex-prime minister Yulia Tymoshenko and former Interior Minister Yuri Lutsenko as candidates in the forthcoming parliamentary polls. The Ukrainian election authority excluded the two from the election list of the opposition Batkyvshchina pary on the grounds that Ukrainian laws prohibit people who are serving a prison term from running in national elections.