Sunday, 20 April 2014

Foreign Minister calls on Ukraine to respect law

23 April 2012

Kiev, April 20 (CTK) - Visiting Czech Foreign Minister Karel Schwarzenberg told Ukrainian journalists Friday that the country must create equal conditions for this year's parliamentary elections and secure sovereignty of law if it wants to join the EU, Interfax agency has reported.

"We hope that Ukraine will do everything necessary to ensure the sovereignty of law and to establish fully-fledged democracy," Schwarzenberg is quoted as saying.

The general election will be held in Ukraine in October. The main issue is the fate of opposition leader Yulia Tymoshenko who is serving a seven-year sentence for having allegedly exceeded the powers of prime minister in Kharkov.

Tymoshenko's imprisonment has complicated Ukraine's path to the prepared association agreement with the EU.

Arseniy Yatsenyuk, one of Tymoshenko's major allies and chief of the opposition Front for Change, held an international political conference in Kiev Friday at which Schwarzenberg was one of the major speakers.

"We hope that Ukraine will become EU member one day. But it must work for persuading European states that there is sovereignty of law and fully-fledged democracy in the country. These are necessary preconditions of its membership," Schwarzenberg said.

He said "complicated path" lies ahead of Ukraine.

Schwarzenberg would not comment on Tymoshenko's imprisonment.

"We are not used to commenting on criminal cases," he said.

"But it is necessary that courts proceed honestly and that they respect all fundamental norms," he added.

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