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Kiev unwilling to meet EU demands on Tymoshenko

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October 21, 2013 07:46 AM EST | AP


KIEV, Ukraine — KIEV, Ukraine (AP) — Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych has signaled he is unwilling to pardon jailed former premier Yulia Tymoshenko, a key condition for the signing of a landmark agreement with the European Union next month.

Speaking after a meeting with his Czech counterpart on Monday, Yanukovych skirted a direct question on whether he would pardon Tymoshenko, as has been recommended by two top EU envoys. The West condemns the jailing of Tymoshenko, Yanukovych's fierce opponent, as politically motivated and is pressing for her release.

Instead, Yanukovych suggested that a special law should be passed allowing Tymoshenko to be sent to Germany for medical treatment. Tymoshenko's allies oppose this because it would likely prevent her from returning to Ukraine and participating in politics, as she could be returned to prison.