No reason to arrest Avakov, says prosecutor's office
There is no reason to arrest former Head of Kharkiv Regional State Administration Arsen Avakov at the moment, the press service of the prosecutor's office of Kharkiv region has said.
"On Monday in the morning a ruling of Chervonozavodsky Court of Kharkiv on the cancellation of the restriction measure in the form of detention and a warranty for his arrest took legal effect, as Arsen Borysovych Avakov was elected as a people's deputy. Thus, there is no reason to arrest him," the press service told Interfax-Ukraine on Tuesday.
It was reported earlier that Avakov had been charged on January 31, 2012 with "abuse of office leading to serious consequences" through unlawfully expropriating 55 hectares of land near the village of Pisochyn in Kharkiv region and changing its status. He was also declared internationally wanted, and the Chervonozavodsky District Court in Kharkiv granted an investigator's request on sanctioning his arrest.
Reports of Avakov's detention in Frosinone, Italy, were confirmed on March 27. After that, the leadership of Batkivschyna sent letters to the Interpol secretary-general and the Italian government, asking them to take into consideration "the obvious political motives" behind Avakov's criminal prosecution, and to release him. A Rome court ruled to release Avakov from custody on April 12.
Avakov led Kharkiv Regional State Administration from February 2005 until February 2010.
He ran for mayor of Kharkiv in the autumn of 2010. He took second place, losing to the winner of the mayoral election, Hennadiy Kernes, by a margin of 0.63%.
In Ukraine's parliamentary elections on October 28, Avakov was elected an MP on the list of the Batkivschyna Party (No. 24 on the list). He said that he would return to Ukraine immediately after the decision on his election as an MP by the CEC is published. On November 23, the CEC registered Avakov as an MP.
As reported, Avakov is to return to Ukraine on December 11.