Three close supporters of jailed former Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko are to visit her in hospital on Tuesday, her Batkivshina party said on Sunday.
The Kachanovsky prison administration decided to allow, as an exception, Rada Deputies Arseny Yatsenyuk, Alexander Turchinov and Grigory Nemyrya to have a short visit with Tymoshenko. The visit will last around an hour and a half, as "the convict has already used up her limit of visits according to the criminal code," the authorities said.
The three deputies say they "will definitely visit Tymoshenko," while her party says the limitation on visit time does not include hospital visits.
She has suffered from spinal herniated discs while in prison and complained of maltreatment, and has been receiving treatment in a hospital in the city of Kharkiv.
The three deputies tried to break open the door to her Kharkiv clinic on Friday in order to hold a party meeting there, the penitentiary service said.
The state penitentiary service said on Saturday it was ready to present a formal request to a medical commission as to whether Tymoshenko should remain in Kharkiv's Hospital Number Five.
Tymoshenko used a video address on Saturday to urge 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 the video posted to her Fatherland party’s website.
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.
Tymoshenko's imprisonment has been widely condemned by the international community, and has helped galvanize criticism against the Yanukovych regime for his perceived rollback on democracy in Ukraine.