Hunger Strikes: The case of former Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko

May 1, 2012

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(AP/Ukrainian Pravda)
Former Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko shows the bruises on her body that she says she got while prison guards attacked her.

Former Ukrainian prime minister Yulia Tymoshenko has been on a hunger strike since April 21 to protest her treatment by prison guards. Tymoshenko rose to prime minister during Ukraine's 2004 Orange Revolution. She ran for president in 2010 but lost to her rival Viktor Yanukovich. Last October, Tymoshenko was sentenced to seven years in prison for abuse of office charges; a conviction that was thought by many to be politically motivated. As she stands trial again, this time for corruption charges, Tymoshenko has complained of ill-treatment in prison and lack of medical care.

As Tymoshenko's hunger strike nears its second week, President Yanukovich has come under growing criticism from European leaders, with some considering a boycott of the upcoming Euro 2012 soccer tournament which Ukraine is hosting, along with Poland.

Alexander Motyl, professor of political science at Rutgers University, joins Worldview to discuss the case.

 

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