KIEV, September 24 - RAPSI. The U.S. Senate approved a resolution co-sponsored by U.S. Sen. James Inhofe (Republicans) and U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin (Democrats) calling for the unconditional release of former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko, and has urged the State Department to adopt sanctions against Ukrainian officials who were involved in her conviction, according to Tymoshenko's official website.
Additionally, the Senate has called on the Ukrainian government to provide Tymoshenko with adequate medical aid and to hold the October 28 parliamentarian elections in a fair and transparent manner, conforming to the standards of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), which Ukraine will preside over in 2013.
Senators have also stressed that continuing to keep Tymoshenko imprisoned threatens U.S.- Ukrainian relations.
On September 19 the Committee on Foreign Relations of the U.S. Senate unanimously endorsed the draft resolution on Ukraine proposed by James Inhofe and Dick Durbin.
On October 11, 2011, the Pechyorsky District Court sentenced Tymoshenko to seven years in prison for abuse of power in signing gas contracts between Ukraine's Naftogaz and Russia's Gazprom in 2009. The West has called the sentence politically motivated, while the Ukrainian government has flatly denied the charges.
In late March 2012, a second case bringing further charges against Tymoshenko was filed with Kharkiv's Kievsky District Court. The case deals with her activity at United Energy Systems. She is accused of misappropriation of funds.