Nelia Shtepa / screenshot

Former mayor of Sloviansk, Nelia Shtepa, earlier accused of encroaching on the territorial integrity of Ukraine, has been elected to Sloviansk Town Council, Donetsk region, at the latest local elections.

That is according to the results of the voting at the elections held on October 25.

Read alsoWoman bullied on Donbas bus after asking passenger in Ukrainian to wear maskShtepa also fought for the mayor's seat, but she failed to get to the second round due to lack of votes (she received 4,596 votes).

Candidate from the Opposition Platform – For Life (OPZZh) Pavlo Prydvorov and incumbent mayor Vadym Lyakh from the Opposition Bloc will run for mayor of Sloviansk in the second round.

Over 30 members of Shtepa's Party for Peace and Development have secured seats in the council.

Significant support was also given to such parties as the European Solidarity, the Nash Kray (Our Land), the Servant of the People, Batkivshchyna, Opposition Platform – For Life, Za Majbutne (For the Future), and Opposition Bloc.

Shtepa's biography in brief

  • Nelia Shtepa was mayor in Sloviansk during the disgraced Viktor Yanukovych's presidency and a member of the Party of Regions. On July 11, 2014, she was detained on suspicion of separatism. She told judges she had called on Russian President Vladimir Putin to enter Sloviansk and "protect" her, allegedly being under Russia-backed militants' pressure.

  • In October 2014, the Kharkiv Regional Prosecutor's Office demanded a life sentence for Shtepa, but in September 2017, the court ruled to put her under house arrest.
  • According to the ruling by the European Court of Human Rights, Shtepa received EUR 3,600 in compensation from Ukraine for "violation of the right to freedom."