New case aims to shut the opposition's mouth but the government will fail, - Medvedchuk

Source : 112 Ukraine

Chairman of the Political Council of Opposition Platform - For Life party and MP commented on the new criminal case opened against him
17:30, 12 October 2021

Viktor Medvedchuk

The goal of the new criminal case opened against the Chairman of the Political Council of Opposition Platform - For Life party and MP Viktor Medvedchuk is to shut down the opposition's mouth. The politician said so when speaking to the press near the building of Pechersk district court of Kyiv, which is about to choose the restriction measure for him.

"The first and the second case are the result, the outcome of rigging the criminal persecution against me as an opposition member. It's a fight against the opposition. This is done for one single purpose: to shut the mouths, to make [the opposition] stop political struggle against this government, but the authorities can't do anything about it", Medvedchuk said.

The politician also added that the records released by the SBU, with his voice allegedly appeing on the tape were actually a fake.

"They are well aware that the records made in 2014-2015, which they demonstrate on their briefings, the ones they refer to as a proof... these will never be acceptable because they were tampered with. Me and my lawyers who protect me confirm that. And I will do everything to prove to prosecutors that these conversations did not actually take place. There are no original tapes, there are no original recording devices; it is a farce and the result of the fakery that was observed in the first case and is now observed in the second", Medvedchuk said.

Related: Thousands of Ukrainians at Verkhovna Rada demand authorities to stop pressure on opposition, repressions against Viktor Medvedchuk

On September 2, the Pechersk district court of Kyiv extended the restrictive measure in the form of the house arrest for Viktor Medvedchuk. The politician is to stay under house arrest until October 31.

As it was reported earlier, on February 2, Volodymyr Zelensky signed a decree on sanctions against 112 Ukraine, NewsONE, and ZiK TV channels. By this decree, he enforced the decision of the National Security and Defense Council on sanctions on the cancellation of the broadcasting licenses of the TV channels belonging to Taras Kozak (112 Ukraine, NewsOne, ZIK). According to the decree that is eligible since the moment of signature, the TV channels faced sanctions that will be active for five years. These sanctions make the broadcasting impossible.

On February 26, journalists of the TV channels illegally closed by President Volodymyr Zelensky united and created a new TV channel - Pershiy Nezalezhniy. The founders of the new media are a group of journalists who previously worked on the 112 Ukraine, NewsOne, and ZIK channels. However, within an hour after the start of broadcasting, Pershiy Nezalezhniy TV channel was illegally turned off under pressure from the authorities.

Earlier, 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.

Leading European politicians, international and Ukrainian experts and world media have criticized Zelensky's decree to shut down 112 Ukraine, NewsOne and ZiK TV channels.

During the last months, the world mass media, European politicians, and experts published almost 97,000 stories dedicated to the persecution by Ukrainian authorities of the opposition and independent TV channels.

Related: Medvedchuk: Authorities only want to sweep under carpet serious problems that Ukraine is facing


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