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14 September, 2012  ▪  Milan Lielich

Oleksandr Tymoshenko: “There is no legitimate government in Ukraine. The only recourse – is replacement”

Yulia Tymoshenko’s husband Oleksandr Tymoshenko shared with The Ukrainian Week his thoughts about the party list of the united opposition, told about his life in Czech Republic and comminication with his wife

At the beginning of this year, Yulia Tymoshenko’s husband obtained political asylum in the Czech Republic, where he went because of concerns about the possibility of an arrest in connection with the United Energy Systems of Ukraine (UESU) case. By refusing to run for parliament, Oleksandr Tymoshenko has virtually closed the door to returning to Ukraine for a long time. He promised that he would be involved in Yulia Tymoshenko’s defence in Europe. The Ukrainian Week was able to contact Mr. Tymoshenko via e-mail.

UW: What are your thoughts on the party list of the united opposition? How do you feel about the fact that many of the people from Yulia Tymoshenko’s inner circle have been deprived of the opportunity to run for parliament in the upcoming election?

The opposition is gaining experience in the battle against Yanukovych’s occupation regime, and is undergoing a difficult course for its formation. We are already providing the opposition with a considerable amount of help: our constant public activities and addresses, as well as publications in the press, which reveal the truth about the criminal actions of the current government of Ukraine, also work with the governments and members of parliament of many countries. Western countries are very well aware of what the current Ukrainian government really is and who Yanukovych is. In my opinion, they are already sick and tired of him.

I’m not interested in the party list. The main issue is an election victory and the return to the people of the power that was usurped by Yanukovych. Once more, with all responsibility, I would like to stress that power has been stolen from the people! Voters – citizens of Ukraine did not vote for their representatives in the government with new powers, with a new form of administration and with new terms of operation, in connection with which, the vast majority of the population and the opposition consider the current bodies of power to be illegitimate.

In addition, Viktor Yanukovych has actually appropriated authority, having restructured the system of government bodies to 100% control of the functioning of all branches of power, in spite of the fact that the Constitutional Court of Ukraine had recognized such actions unconstitutional back in 2005.

Thus, the only instrument for the legalization of government bodies in Ukraine and their authorities, is simultaneous early parliamentary and presidential elections in Ukraine, at which the voters – citizens of Ukraine, will be able to appoint their own representatives to government bodies with the competence, and for the term, specified in valid legislation. This should be subsequently brought in line with standards for compliance with human rights and fundamental freedoms and the prevention of instances of the usurpation of power.

In other words – Ukraine does not have a legitimate government, for which the only recourse is to replace it in its entirety. Everything else is a triviality.

UW: Are you aware of Yulia Tymoshenko’s gradual loss of influence over the “Batkivshchyna” Party, which was demonstratively confirmed after the publication of the opposition’s party lists?

 The “Batkivshchyna” Party is not a Tymoshenko family project. This is not the Party of Regions, where its representatives in parliament are all “family” members. Yulia Tymoshenko created the party together with her adherents and comrades-in-arms. She was, is, and continues to be its leader. In contrast –Yanukovych did not create his own party. He actually expropriated it, just as he did Mezhyhirya (his vast estate just outside Kyiv), the entire banking system and all power in Ukraine. The opposition lists are the lists of the opposition. Yulia Tymoshenko is the personal enemy of Yanukovych. So as long as she is in prison –Yanukovych is on the throne.  

UW: How do you feel about the idea of Yulia Tymoshenko being provided with medical care abroad? Why is it that so little is said about this now?

I’m all for it. However at this time, in my view, it is not realistic. Yanukovych really does not want to let Yulia Tymoshenko go. He is filled with fear. He is also afraid that this will be seen as a failure on his part.

UW: How have you settled in the Czech Republic? What funds are you living off?

My departure from Ukraine was the only right decision. Time has proved this, whatever the representatives of the Ukrainian government may say. Had I not left, I could have already been arrested at any time in 2011. Zhenia demonstrated that she is not only a beloved daughter, but also a true fighter with an iron character, firm principles and a good and strong heart! Yes, it’s really difficult for her, it’s hard to come to terms with the fact that your own mother is being kept illegally behind bars, that she is constantly being treated cruelly, experimented on with video-control, that her every move is spied on, at which some people even get a sense of satisfaction from this. But she will stand this test. As for help, the Czech Republic is the only place from which I am able to do this with maximum effect.

I have already had to live in the Czech Republic before – from 1999 - 2000. So this country is dear to me. At the present time, I am living in Prague. The Ukrainian regime is pursuing not only our family, but all our relatives, trying to discover any information about my wife. The actions of this criminal group are not often prone to common sense.

A dictatorship is being established in Ukraine, something that has been realized everywhere in the world.

Naturally, I’ve had to start my life anew in the Czech Republic, but I know what to start with and how. I have significant experience in entrepreneurship, and here, I understand the conditions for conducting business. There are several available avenues – from trading operations to production. It’s possible that here in the Czech Republic, I’ll be able to embody all the things that I was unable to do in Ukraine for various reasons. In any case, successful businessmen do not leave the Czech Republic, because their business has caught the eye of bandits from a rival criminal political group, in contrast to what is happening in Ukraine.

UW: By what means, and how often do you communicate with your wife and daughter? When was the last time that you were in contact with Yulia Tymoshenko: by phone or in writing? What did you talk about?

We maintain contact through our daughter and lawyers. But the fact that Yulia Tymoshenko is in prison does not mean that she is isolated, however much the bandit regime wishes for this to be the case. She manages all necessary party processes from behind bars and communicates with people. We have no doubt that the European Court of Human Rights will objectively examine all the issues, and will undoubtedly deliver a fair decision regarding Yulia Tymoshenko.

Yulia Tymoshenko did not violate the law. Different people can think and write about her all they want, criticize or support her, love or even hate her, but she will serve her country in any way she can as long as her heart is beating – at large or behind bars, in politics or outside politics. According to her, European countries have to assess all the risks of the establishment of a dictatorship in Ukraine. If Ukrainians and democratic countries do not act, a conglomerate of dictatorships and authoritarian regimes will be established on the eastern border of the European Union and NATO, which will change not only the geopolitical map of Europe and Eurasia, but that of the entire world as well. European politicians have to stop trying to convince Yanukovych to become a democrat. They have to understand that this will not change the dictator.

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