Ukraine’s leaders show new defiance to West

Under pressure internationally for curtailing democracy and imprisoning political opponents, president Viktor Yanukovych’s administration this week adopted an even more strongly defiant tone.

The words and actions signal more clearly that the Party of Regions-led government is not going to heed demands for the release of imprisoned ex-prime minister Yulia Tymoshenko and other opposition leaders.

Speaking on October 3 at a gathering with foreign ambassadors, Yanukovych reaffirmed commitment to European integration, but warned that Ukraine under his rule would not give in to demands from Brussels, Washington or anyone else.

“Putting pressure of any kind on Ukraine is unacceptable,” Yanukovych said amid repeated calls for more than a year by European and US officials to free Tymoshenko and other jailed opposition politicians ahead of an October 28 parliamentary election.

Read the full story in The Kyiv Post.

(Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovich. Photo: