Leader of the Batkivschyna Party and former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko together with her lawyer came on Monday for questioning at the Prosecutor General's Office.
More than 300 supporters holding the flags of the Batkivschyna Party, the Popular Rukh of Ukraine and national banners greeted the politician.
Tymoshenko thanked those gathered for their support and said that she had arrived for questioning with her lawyer.
She noted that she was not afraid of criminal prosecution and did not intend to leave Ukraine.
"I will not hide in hospital, [and] I will not leave the country," Tymoshenko told journalists in front of the Central Investigation Department of the General Prosecutor's Office.
The press service of the Prosecutor General's Office reported on December 15 that a criminal case had been opened against Tymoshenko due to the misuse of funds allocated under the Kyoto Protocol and that she had been banned from traveling outside Kyiv.
Former Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko has said that the Prosecutor General's Office has charged her with the misuse of public funds.
"A criminal case has been opened against me," Tymoshenko said after questioning at the main investigation department of the Prosecutor General's Office.
"Tymoshenko, acting intentionally and taking into account her personal interests, decided to unilaterally take a decision to use part of the funds that came from the sale of quotas for greenhouse gases in order to cover the expenses of Ukraine's state budget regarding the payment of pensions," Tymoshenko cited a resolution issued by the Prosecutor General's Office.
While leaving the Main Investigation Department of the General Prosecutor's Office on Monday, where she was called for questioning, Tymoshenko said that she was prohibited from leaving the country.
Tymoshenko said that the charges against her were fanciful, as the receipts from the sale of environmental quotas came to a single treasury account that is used for financing all government spending, including pensions.
"Money from the Kyoto Protocol was not used. We used the funds from the single treasury account…" she said, noting that the funds were used to pay pensions.
The questioning of Tymoshenko lasted for more than two hours.
Former Ukrainian Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko has been charged with abusing her power and has been ordered to stay in Kyiv during the investigation. "The evidence collected in Tymoshenko's criminal case overwhelmingly proves that, when holding the post of prime minister, she abused her powers in July 2009, entailing heavy consequences. She single-handedly decided to use part of the funds earned through the sale of greenhouse gas emission quotas to cover the Ukrainian state budget's expenditure, primarily pension commitments," according to a copy of the former prime minister's indictment published in the online Ukrainska Pravda newspaper.
However, Ukrainian Prosecutor General's Office spokesman Yuriy Boichenko told Interfax-Ukraine that he could not officially confirm the authenticity of the document's copy. "I cannot confirm the authenticity of this copy officially," he said.
Boichenko confirmed that the Prosecutor General's Office brought charges against Tymoshenko on Monday. "She is now a defendant, but her pre-trial restrictions remain the same - she has been ordered to continue staying in Kyiv," he said.
On December 15, the Ukrainian Prosecutor General's Office opened a criminal case against Tymoshenko, accusing her of spending money earmarked in the state budget for environmental spending to cover Ukraine's pension arrears during the economic crisis.
Tymoshenko was officially charged on Monday in the presence of her lawyer.
The Prosecutor General's Office earlier opened a criminal case against Batkivschyna Party leader the former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko over the misuse of funds received by her government from the sale of quotas for greenhouse gases under the Kyoto Protocol. According to the press service of the Prosecutor General's Office, Tymoshenko was ordered not to leave Kyiv.
Accounting Chamber: Tymoshenko's government illegally allocated UAH 67.6 m to Justice Ministry to protect state's interests in foreign courts
An audit of the use of budgetary funds conducted by the Accounting Chamber of Ukraine has revealed that the previous government illegally allocated UAH 67.6 million to the Justice Ministry from the state budget's reserve fund in order to protect the rights and interests of the state in foreign courts.
"The previous government, instead of increasing budgetary allocations under budgetary programs aimed at ensuring social guarantees to Ukrainian citizens, illegally allocated UAH 67.6 million to the Justice Ministry from the state budget's reserve fund to protect the rights and interests of the state in foreign courts, which could always have been foreseen in the law on the state budget, rather than to take measures to prevent the emergence of and eliminate the consequences of manmade, natural and socio-political emergencies," the press service of the Accounting Chamber of Ukraine said in a statement issued on Monday. UKRINFORM, Interfax-Ukraine
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