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Tymoshenko Says Opposition Relatives Being 'Terrorized'

Ukrainian opposition leader Yulia Tymoshenko

Ukrainian opposition leader Yulia Tymoshenko

Former Ukrainian Prime Minister Yuliya Tymoshenko says the authorities are "terrorizing" opposition politicians and their relatives, RFE/RL's Ukrainian Service reports.

Tymoshenko, the head of the opposition Batkivshchyna (Fatherland) party, was summoned for questioning at the Prosecutor-General's Office in Kyiv today regarding alleged crimes she committed while premier from 2007-2010.

She told journalists in front of the prosecutor's office that President Viktor Yanukovych, the security service (SBU), and Prosecutor-General Viktor Psonka "terrorize the relatives of opposition activists."

Tymoshenko said an SBU officer recently tried to summon the wife of opposition parliament deputy Ruslan Lukyanchuk and that relatives of Batkivshchyna Deputy Chairman Oleksandr Turchynov have been summoned to the Prosecutor General.

She added that a relative of opposition parliament deputy Andriy Kozhemyakin was arrested on a fabricated charge of taking bribes. She said relatives of former State Treasury chief Tetyana Slyuz have also been under pressure from authorities.

"The officials are exerting pressure on opposition politicians' relatives, trying to influence our opposition activities as politicians," Tymoshenko said.

Tymoshenko herself is currently facing two charges. One alleges misuse of financial allocations received by Ukraine under the Kyoto Protocol on climate change, and a second one alleging involvement in the illegal purchase of cars for medical services in villages.

She has been asked not to leave Ukraine until the investigation is complete.

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