WBC heavyweight champion Vitali Klitschko has put preparations for a bout with Polish boxer Tomasz Adamek on hold after hearing of the arrest of Ukrainian opposition leader Yulia Tymoshenko. 40-year-old Klitschko is not only a boxing champion, but also the leader of the UDAR (or “punch” in English) opposition party. The elder of the Klitschko brothers is scheduled to step into the ring against Tomasz Adamek in the Polish city of Wroclaw on September 10, and reports of the fight being in jeopardy are very premature.
Yulia Tymoshenko was arrested on Friday on charges of disrupting the functioning of the court where she was being tried for abuse of power in connection with gas contracts during her term as prime minister in 2009.
”When I learned about what is happening in Ukraine, I stopped my training for the match and returned to Kiev, as I understand that the real battle for democratic values takes place here – in Ukraine – and I can’t be a bystander in this situation. Tymoshenko was jailed on the eve of the anniversary of the Ukrainian independence. This shows that democracy in our country, which has lasted for just twenty years, is now being destroyed. If this will continue, we’ll always live under dictatorship and total corruption and may forget about the development of civil society,” Klitschko wrote on his blog.