Trial of Tymoshenko Adjourned Until May 21
A court in Ukraine on Saturday adjourned the tax evasion trial of former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko until May 21 due to the ill health of the opposition leader who is already in prison on an abuse-of-office conviction condemned by the West.
Judge Kostyantyn Sadovsky told the court in the city of Kharkiv it would be impossible to conduct hearings in the absence of Tymoshenko, who says she is suffering from chronic back pain.
The European Union saw Tymoshenko's jailing last October as politically motivated and has said its members would not ratify an association agreement with the former Soviet republic while she is in prison.
European politicians were also alarmed by Tymoshenko's allegations she was beaten by prison guards this month which prison authorities deny while state prosecutors are investigating her complaint.
Germany has offered to arrange for her treatment in a Berlin clinic but Tymoshenko's family says she will not leave Ukraine and it is not clear if the Kiev government would let her go.