Ukraine ex-PM Tymoshenko freed


BBC - The Ukrainian opposition leader and former Prime Minister, Yulia Tymoshenko, has been freed from jail.

It follows a vote by parliament to release her as the president fled the capital Kiev.

Before the release, her daughter said her mother was already legally free but still in the hospital where she was being held.

She was sentenced to seven years in jail after a controversial verdict on her actions as prime minister.

The glamorous, fiery orator who helped lead the Orange Revolution - Ukraine’s revolt against a controversial election in 2004 - was convicted of criminally exceeding her powers when she agreed a gas deal with Russia which was seen to have disadvantaged Ukraine.

She has always said the charges of abuse of power are a tissue of lies, inspired by the man she helped oust in 2004, Viktor Yanukovych, who returned to defeat her in the 2010 presidential election.

The European Union had demanded her release as one of the conditions of the EU-Ukraine trade pact that President Yanukovych rejected last year - triggering the protests that led to the current crisis.


Mrs Tymoshenko is on the right and her daughter is on the left:

The most recent twitter feeds from the BBC are this:

16:19: Moments after being, Yulia Tymoshenko says “dictatorship has fallen”
16:16: “We are the power!” Maidan commander Andriy Parubiy tells jubilant crowds. “Yulia Tymoshenko is heading here, and will be with us within hours!”
Jack Garland in Kiev tweets: Just told by protestor guarding Yanukovitch residence not to step on the grass… #kiev #maidan
Gabriel Gatehouse, BBC Correspondent Ukrainians walking around the opulent residence, like in a theme park: “I’m in shock,” said many. “So that’s where all my tax money’s gone”
16:13: UK Foreign Secretary William Hague issues a statement on developments in Ukraine: "Today I am in close touch with key partners over the extraordinary developments in Ukraine. Events in the last 24 hours show the will of Ukrainians to move towards a different future, and ensure that the voices of those who have protested courageously over several months are heard. "

"We will work closely with our EU partners

On the BBC news it is said that she looks very frail coming out of prison.


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