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Ukraine ex-PM family hopeful about Germany release

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September 9, 2013 08:18 AM EST | AP


KIEV, Ukraine — The daughter of Ukraine's jailed former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko says she is hopeful that her mother will be released to Germany for treatment of her back problem, paving the way for a landmark cooperation deal between this ex-Soviet republic and the European Union.

Tymoshenko, a key opposition leader, is serving a seven-year sentence on charges of abuse of office condemned as political by the West. EU officials have been lobbying President Viktor Yanukovych to allow Tymoshenko to be flown to Germany if he wants the deal signed.

Tymoshenko's daughter Eugenia told reporters Monday that "we hope that the Ukrainian authorities will still solve this issue."

Yanukovych has resisted strong Western pressure to free her, but recently hinted at a "humanitarian approach" in her case.