Court refuses to suspend Tymoshenko's appeal due to poor health
KIEV, December 1 - RAPSI. An appeals court has dismissed former Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko's petition to suspend the hearing of her appeal against prison sentence due to her poor health, RIA Novosti reported on Thursday.
A Kiev district court sentenced Tymoshenko on October 11 to seven years in prison for abuse of power in signing gas contracts between Ukraine's Naftogaz and Russia's Gazprom in 2009. Both her defense attorneys and opposition activists believe her prosecution is driven by politics, while the authorities have denied the allegations.
"The court finds no reason to satisfy the defense's petition," Judge Yelena Sitailo said.
Tymoshenko's defense has filed several petitions as of late, one of which sought to change the measure of restraint against the former PM.
The court is expected to consider the remaining petitions soon.
Tymoshenko could not attend todays hearing for health reasons. The court does not require her presence at this stage of the appeal proceedings.
Tymoshenko has been under arrest for almost four months and her health has been seriously damaged during her detention. She feels sick and remains in bed, her defense counsel says.
Tymoshenko was taken to a medical unit at the pretrial detention center several days ago.