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Walking the diplomatic line in Ukraine

Walking the diplomatic line in Ukraine
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A group of German doctors has been in Ukraine to examine the country’s jailed former Prime Minister, Yulia Tymoshenko.

They will give their medical opinion on a back problem and the conditions of the hospital where the authorities propose she is treated. For the moment the doctors are being diplomatic.

“We can’t make any official statements, we have to inform the authorities first and ask for the “ok” from the patient to talk about the state of her health. Only then can we inform the public,” explained Karl Marx Einhopl.

The 51-year-old is due to face another trial this week in relation to her business dealings. Her daughter, Eugenia claims the German doctors say her mother is not fit to appear in court.

“German doctors made their diagnosis. They said that she has very serious problems with her back, it’s her hernia, multiple hernia, it causes tremendous pain, that she can not walk and that it will be impossible for her to take part in a further investigation in a court session,” she said.

As Ukraine celebrates the Orthodox Easter the former PM’s supporters took more than 500 traditional cakes to the prison where Tymoshenko is being held.

The German government is in talks with Ukrainian officials about allowing Tymoshenko to be treated in their country though such a move would require a new law say authorities in Kiev.

The former prime minister has served eight months of a seven year prison term on charges of abuse of office. The verdict was condemned as politically motivated by the west.