U.S. Ambassador Tefft and EU Ambassador Tombinski Visit Yuriy Lutsenko in Prison
November 26, 2012
U.S. Ambassador John F. Tefft and EU Ambassador Jan Tombinski visited former Interior Minister Yuriy Lutsenko at Mena prison in Mokoshyne, in Chernihiv oblast, on Monday November 26. After a three hour conversation with Mr. Lutsenko, the ambassadors held a brief press conference with about 25 journalists from Ukraine’s major television channels and wire services who had waited in the cold rain for a readout of the encounter. Ambassador Tefft told the journalists that he and Ambassador Tombinski will inform their governments about Mr. Lutsenko's health and the substance of their discussion, which ranged from Lutsenko’s legal situation to the current political situation in the country after the elections. Ambassador Tefft noted that he was impressed by Mr. Lutsenko’s sense of humor. He stressed that the U.S. government has spoken repeatedly about its opposition to the selective prosecution of Mr. Lutsenko and former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko and urged that both be released. Ambassador Tombinski commented on the former minister’s voracious appetite for reading books and stated that the EU is closely monitoring his appeal hearings.