Ukrainian President pardons former interior minister

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Ukrainian President pardons former interior minister

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Ukranian President Viktor Yanukovych has pardoned jailed former Interior Minister Yuriy Lutsenko, a close ally of imprisoned former Prime Minister Yulia Timoshenko.

The announcement was made on the presidential website. Yanukovych said he had signed a decree that grants a pardon to Lutsenko who was imprisoned for embezzlement and illegal surveillance. Appeals by Ukranian and European Union officials had led to the move. A total of six jailed people were pardoned including former Minister of Environmental Protection Georgy Filipchuk.

Yulia Timoshenko remains incarcerated. She is serving a seven year sentence for abuse of office, which her supporters believe is politically motivated.