Elmar Brok: EU should introduce sanctions against representatives of Ukrainian government
Chairman of the Committee on Foreign Affairs of the European Parliament (EP) Elmar Brok isn’t ruling out the possibility the EU will introduce visa restrictions for representatives of the Ukrainian government involved in the political persecution of Yulia Tymoshenko, according to an Official web site of Yulia Tymoshenko.
“We can do this. It has already happened with Belarus and Syria. If things continue the way they are, this will affect Mr. Kuzmin. We will be forced to take action against those who are systematically destroying the principles of a legal state," Elmar Brok said in an interview with Deutsche Welle radio.
The representatives of the EP said charges of Yulia Tymoshenko’s complicity in murder are another case of selective justice. "First Deputy Prosecutor General Kuzmin is continuing his battle with Yulia Tymoshenko and is accumulating charges that are as unsubstantiated as all the previous ones. The international community is convinced of this. It is evidence of selective justice. The murder charges were proved groundless long ago. The goal is to destroy Yulia Tymoshenko as a politician and a person," he stressed.
Elmar Brok questioned the new evidence in the case of the 1996 murder of MP Yevhen Shcherban. "The majority of witnesses for Tymoshenko aren’t recognized and given the right to speak. We have a case of selective justice. Kuzmin, if he wanted to, could prove that Tymoshenko is responsible for the spots on the moon," said the MEP.
According to him, some of the main topics of the EU-Ukraine summit on February 25 in Brussels, Belgium, will be the lack of justice reforms long promised by the Prosecutor General’s Office, electoral law and fair elections. "These are some of the conditions that must be met for the association agreement to be signed in Vilnius in late November. This was decided by the Foreign Affairs Council and the European Parliament. And until this happens, there will be no progress on association. I hope that Ukraine agrees to these conditions," he said.
"When I speak with politicians, they understand. But Deputy Prosecutor General Kuzmin has his own policy. I got the impression that he’s the most influential person in Ukraine," Elmar Brok added.
The EP representative also underlined that Ukraine hasn’t made progress in key issues identified by the EU. "I am seeing the opposite – a worsening. We need to know whether President Yanukovych and Prime Minister Azarov really want this. I spoke with Azarov a month ago and he assured me that he believes the European charter is correct. But if that’s the case then he must find the power to influence Kuzmin," he said.
"The Ukrainian government knows there are practical ways. They are well aware of appropriate proposals. I don’t want to voice them right now. But the Ukrainian leadership has the opportunity to resolve these issues in a human way. I’m surprised they’re not doing this," Elmar Brok said.