Savchenko shocks with leniency statement for pro-Russian separatists

Ukrainian politician Nadija Savchenko's statements in favour of pardoning pro-Russian separatist supporters drew mixed reviews on Friday.

Ukrainians need to "learn how to ask for forgiveness and to forgive, or else there will be no peace," the Ukrainian war hero said a day earlier; but on condition that the Kiev government take control of the roughly 400-kilometre-long border shared with Russia, she continued.

"As I read that quote, I couldn't believe my eyes," said Anton Gerashchenko, advisor to Ukraine's Interior Minister Arsen Avakov.

"We will clamp our teeth together, stand strong and achieve the freedom of our land through various methods," he wrote on Facebook.

Savchenko is Russian President Vladimir Putin's "Trojan horse," he said.

Other lawmakers have also reacted angrily to Savchenko's comments.

Savchenko, a military pilot and the most famous prisoner of the conflict in eastern Ukraine, was elected as a lawmaker in late 2014 while she was in Russian custody on charges that she helped kill Russian citizens.

Last update: Fri, 22/07/2016 - 17:30

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