The house arrest of the chairman of the political council of the "Opposition Platform - For Life" party, MP Viktor Medvedchuk is a restriction of freedom and is unacceptable for the European community. This was stated by Dr. Maximilian Krah, a member of the European Parliament from Germany, who is a member of the subcommittee on human rights. He said so from the rostrum during a debate in the European Parliament.
"But politically, we are not sure that Ukraine has really changed for the better. The democratically elected opposition leader Viktor Medvedchuk is now under house arrest - restricting freedoms cannot be acceptable to us. The situation is getting more complicated. Peace commitments are not being met. And we see a double standard here," he said.
Krah reminded that the recent local elections in Ukraine had a turnout of about 30 percent, indicating a loss of public confidence in the current political regime.
"We should take a closer look at what is happening there. And there is no need to idealize it. It's high time we looked at what we're investing money in and applied pressure on the oligarchy, demanding improvements. A few months ago, we watched in exasperation as the regime in Afghanistan, which we used to praise, fell. And when the Americans pulled out, it fell apart. So we should be careful about what we do with our funds. And don't make the same mistake with Ukraine. The same oligarchy has been in power there for 30 years, and the fact that it's dressed up in European clothes is not enough proof that it shares our values. We should not be too romantic in our evaluation of Ukraine and its politics", the MEP stated.
On October 12, Pechersk district court decided to choose the house arrest as a restrictive measure in the new case against Viktor Medvedchuk. The judges ruled that he is to remain under house arrest until December 7. Medvedchuk said that he would continue to fight the current government, no matter how much the repression against him intensifies. He stressed that together with the Opposition Platform - For Life they will continue to protect the interests of the Ukrainian people.
"Don't the prosecutors be alarmed. I'm ready for everything, I'll do whatever the law says to, but at that, I'll be still fighting this government, just like I did before - actually, just the way our party used to fight and will ckeep on fighting", Medvedchuk stressed.
On October 8, the General Prosecutor's Office and the Security Service of Ukraine pressed new charges against Viktor Medvedchuk. The new charges related to fuel supplies from the uncontrolled territories of Donetsk and Luhansk regions in 2014.
As reported, in the first criminal case, the Pechersk District Court decided to extended the house arrest for Viktor Medvedchuk by 2 months, until October 31.
On February 20, President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky put into effect the decision of the National Security and Defense Council on sanctions against 8 individuals and 19 legal entities. Among them are three Ukrainian citizens - the politician Viktor Medvedchuk and his wife Oksana Marchenko and the common-law wife of the owner of the NewsOne, ZIK, and 112 Ukraine channels, Taras Kozak, Natalya Lavreniuk.
On May 13, Kyiv court chose the restriction measure for Viktor Medvedchuk, the opposition MP and Chairman of the Political Council of Opposition Platform - For Life party. On July 9, the court extended the house arrest of Viktor Medvedchuk until September 7. The lawyers of the politician stated about the recusal of the judge Serhiy Vovk right after the end of the court session. However, the court declined the appeal on recusal of the judge and prosecutor. On July 30, the Kyiv Court of Appeal refused to satisfy the appeal op the lawyers of Chairman of the Political Council of the Opposition Platform - For Life Viktor Medvedchuk against the extension of the politician's house arrest until September 7.
The Opposition Platform - For Life responded to this legal arbitrariness, stressing that the political persecution of MP Taras Kozak has only one purpose: reprisals against independent media, 112 Ukraine, NewsOne and ZIK TV channels, and the destruction of freedom of speech in Ukraine.
Commenting on the situation, Viktor Medvedchuk emphasized that his lawyers were fully prepared to appeal against the measure of restraint and they have evidence that refutes the prosecution's accusation and prove the illegality of applying house arrest to him.
Thus, the defense filed an appeal against the decision of the Pechersk District Court of Kyiv on extension of the measure of restraint for the politician. However, on July 30, the Kyiv Court of Appeal denied it, despite the defeat of all the arguments of the prosecution.
Over the past four months, the world media, European politicians, and experts have published 114,853 materials on the persecution of the opposition and independent TV channels by the Ukrainian authorities.