May 4, 2012 / 1:03 PM / 8 years ago

Ukraine prosecutors deny Tymoshenko beating allegations

A man sits in a tent for supporters of jailed opposition leader Yulia Tymoshenko in Lviv May 4, 2012. Ukrainian prosecutors have found no proof of alleged beating by Tymoshenko's prison guards, prosecutor general Viktor Pshonka said on Friday. Tymoshenko, a former prime minister, said last week prison guards beat her during a forced visit to a hospital and her supporters circulated photographs showing bruises on her arms and abdomen. REUTERS/Gleb Garanich

KIEV (Reuters) - Ukrainian prosecutors have found no proof of alleged beating by prison guards of jailed opposition politician Yulia Tymoshenko, prosecutor general Viktor Pshonka said on Friday.

Tymoshenko, a former prime minister and opponent of President Viktor Yanukovich, said last week prison guards beat her during a forced visit to a hospital and her supporters circulated photographs showing bruises on her arms and abdomen.

The allegation alarmed Western politicians who consider her a political prisoner.

But Pshonka said his office was unable to verify her claims.

“Following an investigation, the request to launch a criminal case has been denied,” he told reporters.

The European Union has condemned Tymoshenko’s conviction on abuse-of-office charges last October as an example of selective justice and shelved landmark deals on political association and free trade with Ukraine over the issue.

Reporting by Olzhas Auyezov

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