Tymoshenko’s Daughter Meets With Community Representatives
Eugenia Tymoshenko, the daughter of imprisoned former prime minister Julia Tymoshenko, was in Washington, DC in early February 2012 to testify before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee about the status of her mother’s imprisonment. While in the nation’s capital, the ex-prime minister’s daughter also participated in the National Prayer Breakfast (attended by President Obama) and met with various congressional and Administration officials. Representatives of Ukrainian community organizations in Washington, DC had an opportunity to meet with Ms. Tymoshenko and her advisors to discuss the current situation in Ukraine.
The nearly one-hour meeting with Ms. Tymoshenko was held on Friday morning, February 3rd. Organized by the Ukrainian Congress Committee of America (UCCA), the community representatives included: Michael Sawkiw, Jr., Director of the Ukrainian National Information Service (UNIS), the UCCA’s public affairs bureau in Washington, DC; Andrew Bihun, President of The Washington, Group; Rev. Vasyl Kharuk, pastor of the Ukrainian Catholic National Shrine of the Holy Family; and Oksana Yakovenko from the US-Ukraine Foundation.
Ms. Tymoshenko briefed the community representatives about the status of her mother’s health and efforts to win her release. She mentioned her testimony at the Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing and the need for follow-up with the Committee members. Mr. Sawkiw informed Eugenia Tymoshenko of the community’s actions since her mother’s imprisonment, including protests held at Ukrainian diplomatic missions in the United States, as well as efforts to contact Doctors Without Borders to send an independent team of physicians to Ukraine to examine Yuliya Tymoshenko. Others, too, inquired about the former prime minister’s health, especially considering the harsh, cold winter that Ukraine is currently facing. The community representatives also interacted with Ms. Tymoshenko’s advisors, who informed them of their plans for appeals in Ukraine, the outlook for the October 2012 parliamentary elections, and sought advice to intercede on behalf of Julia Tymoshenko’s deteriorating health.
UNIS has observed the situation regarding the former prime minister and continuously monitors ongoing congressional developments including Rep. Marcy Kaptur’s resolution on the release of Yuliya Tymoshenko. A key factor in the issues affecting the former prime minister entails a free and democratic society, including its electoral process. To ensure a free, fair, and transparent process, the UCCA will once again host a delegation of International Election Observers to monitor the upcoming October parliamentary elections in Ukraine. For further information about congressional actions and the UCCA election observer mission, please contact the UCCA at email@example.com or UNIS at firstname.lastname@example.org.