Jailed Ukrainian opposition leader Yulia Tymoshenko urged her compatriots to “overthrow the gang” led by President Viktor Yanukovych during the country’s upcoming parliamentary elections.
“I want to appeal to all people: if you do not realize now that Ukraine is led by a criminal, that Ukraine is led by a mafia, then nothing can defend you from what will happen in a country led by Yanukovych,” she said in a video address posted to her Fatherland party’s website.
It is not immediately clear when the message was filmed.
Tymoshenko was sentenced last October to seven years in prison for abuse of office stemming from an allegedly unfavorable natural gas contract she negotiated with Russia in 2009.
She is currently being held in the eastern Ukrainian city of Kharkiv, where she has fallen ill and complained of maltreatment.
Tymoshenko's imprisonment has been widely condemned by the international communit, and has helped galvanize criticism against the Yanukovych regime for his perceived rollback on democracy in Ukraine.
The elections are set for October 28. Yanukovych's ruling Party of Regions will fight to retain its majority in the Verkhovna Rada, Ukraine's parliament.
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