Tuesday 30 April 2013

Tymoshenko Judgment - Former Ukranian Prime Minister Arbitrarily Detained

Today, the Court issued its judgment in the very sensitive case of Yuliya Tymoshenko, the currently detained former prime minister of Ukraine. Tymoshenko's predicament has already led to political tensions within Ukraine, obviously, but also between Ukraine and other countries (as well as the EU). The Court now adds its voice to the chorus of criticism, by finding a number of violations. Most importantly, it held that the detention was arbitrary (several violations of article 5 ECHR) and a violation - very rare - of Article 18, the provision which holds that "shall not be applied for any purpose other than those for which they have been prescribed." No violation of her detention conditions (Article 3) was found, although the Court was divided on the latter issue. Although the judgment in itself is a quite damning verdict on the state of the rule of law in Ukraine, the concurring and dissenting opinions go even further in pointing at some very problematic aspects. The press release can be found in Englis here and in Ukranian here.