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 Ukrainian Politics
  2437

 Elections without Tymoshenko and Lutsenko are a Disgrace for Ukraine, European Parliament Member

The Member of the European Parliament Charles Tannock (European Conservatives and Reformists Group) considers the holding of the parliamentary elections without Yulia Tymoshenko and Yuriy Lutsenko to be a disgrace for the Ukrainian authorities.

"Personally for me, the Ukrainian parliamentary elections without the opposition leaders are a shame. The outcome cannot represent a true verdict of popular opinion and this situation will undermine the legitimacy of the elected parliamentarians", Charles Tannock said, commenting on the refusal by the Central Election Commission (CEC) to register Yulia Tymoshenko and Yuriy Lutsenko as candidates to the Verkhovnaya Rada.

"By convention, the European Parliament (EP) observes elections in OSCE countries in the "troika" formation, i.e. with the OSCE and the Council of Europe, to produce a joint final report. However, this is a voluntary arrangement, and I will call on the EP if necessary to produce a separate report which reflects the undemocratic climate under which these elections are being held," he added.

In his turn, MEP and Vice President of the European People's Party Jacek Saryusz-Wolski (Poland) added that the CEC's refusal to register Yulia Tymoshenko and Yuriy Lutsenko is an extension of the current government's policy to prevent the country's opposition leaders from participating in political life.

"By refusing the registration of Mrs. Tymoshenko and Mr. Lutsenko, the central electoral committee is in a breach of the Ukrainian constitution. This text provides for a differentiation between the right of a candidate to be registered and the right to run in the elections: it says a conviction can be a reason to refuse that a person becomes a member of parliament but it specifies that the conviction can't be a ground to refuse the registration in legislative elections. The decision of the Central Election Commission confirms in that case the intention of the Ukrainian authorities and President Yanukovych to eliminate political opponents and the opposition leaders", explained the MEP.

"It is hard to imagine that this decision will not complicate te EU-Ukrainian relations even further. It will probably become even harder for Ukrainian authorities to obtain any facilitations in EU-Ukrainian dialogue which in return will hit ordinary citizens of Ukraine. We cannot talk about free and democratic elections when the opposition leaders are not allowed to run. The EU and its Member States, which are also members of the UN and OSCE, will probably take this argument into account in assessing the electoral process. I believe it will become a serious trump card for the European democracies in the process of the assessment of the elections by the OSCE and ODIHR," he added.


 
 
 
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