|People's Deputy of Ukraine|
25 May 2006 – 12 June 2007
|Constituency||Yulia Tymoshenko Bloc, No.26|
23 November 2007 – 12 December 2012
|Constituency||Yulia Tymoshenko Bloc, No.29|
12 December 2012 – 27 November 2014
|Constituency||Radical Party, Chernihiv Oblast,|
|Assumed office |
27 November 2014
|Constituency||Radical Party, No.1|
Oleh Valeriovich Lyashko
3 December 1972
Chernihiv, Ukrainian SSR, Soviet Union
|Political party||Batkivshchyna (Before 2012)|
Radical Party (2012–present)
|Spouse(s)||Rosita Sayranen (2018-present)|
|Alma mater||Kharkiv National Pedagogical|
Lyashko was elected as a deputy to the Verkhovna Rada in the 2006 and 2007 parliamentary election for Bloc Yulia Tymoshenko (BYT) and in the 2012 parliamentary election and 2014 parliamentary election for his Radical Party. Prior to this he was a journalist.
Lyashko was born in Chernihiv on 3 December 1972, but grew up in a village of Lozovivka, Starobilsk Raion where his mother lived. When Lyashko was two years old, his parents separated, and his mother was forced to send him to an orphanage. Lyashko studied in three boarding schools: Yablunivskoy, Komarovskaya and Borznyansky. He worked as a shepherd at the Progress collective farm, and after secondary education he went to college for tractor operator studies. In an September 2015 interview Lyashko stated that shepherd was his summer job back in 1987-88 when he 14 year old every summer used to arrive to Luhansk Oblast and earn up to 300 rubles per summer. After that Lyashko would buy in Starobilsk clothing and shoes. When he graduated his boarding school, Lyashko had around 2,000 rubles in savings which all were "burnt" (out of the post-Soviet inflation).
In 1998 he graduated from the Faculty of Law H.S. Skovoroda Kharkiv National Pedagogical University.
From 1990 till 1992 Lyashko was correspondent and head of the newspaper "Young Guard" (based in Kiev). In 1992 he became editor of "Commerce Herald" of the Ministry of Foreign Economic Relations of Ukraine.
On 21 June 1993 Lyashko was arrested and indicted for grand funds embezzlement. On 9 December 1994 the Criminal College of the Kiev City Court found Lyashko guilty according to acticles 86-1, 191, and 194 part 3 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine. The court found Lyashko guilty of embezzlement of 1 300 000 rubles personally, and 1 100 000 roubles collectively with accomplices. Lyashko was sentenced to 6 years' prison term and sequestration of the property. The Supreme Court reduced the time to 4 years imprisonment. Lyashko was released in May 1995 under the amnesty due to the "50th anniversary of the Victory over Nazi Germany". In 1998, the criminal case was erased. Lyashko himself claims the case was payback for his critical journalism. He claims that his case was falsified by deputy minister of Internal Affairs Veniamin Bartashevych.
In the years 1995 and 1996 Lyashko was editor of the newspapers Politika and Pravda Ukraine. In August 1996 he became Chief Editor of the newspaper Politika. In 1999, the publication was closed by decision of the Moscow District Court in Kiev for "divulging state secrets". From 2000 till 2006 Lyashkov was chief editor of Freedom (for "Newspaper "Policy").
Lyashko was elected as a deputy to the Verkhovna Rada (Ukraine's parliament) in the 2006 parliamentary election for Bloc Yulia Tymoshenko (BYT) (№ 26 in the list). Chairman of the Subcommittee on the organization of the Supreme Council of the Parliamentary Committee on Rules, Ethics and maintenance of the parliament.
On 18 October 2010, he was expelled from the BYT faction "for cooperating with the majority coalition". BYT had assured that video leaked a week before would not be a reason for an exclusion of Lyashko from the faction.
On 8 August 2011, during its third party congress, Lyashko was elected the new party leader of the Ukrainian Radical Democratic Party. The same day the party changed its name to Radical Party of Oleh Lyashko (shortened "Radical Party").
In the 2012 parliamentary election he was re-elected into the Verkhovna Rada after winning single-member constituency number 208 in the Chernigov Oblast (as candidate of the Radical Party) with 55.57% of the votes. Deputy Chairman of the Parliamentary Committee on Finance and Banking. He did not join any faction in parliament.
Mid-November 2012 Lyashko went on hunger strike in support of jailed (fellow) opposition leader Yulia Tymoshenko, who was imprisoned at the time, and against the recognition of the results of the 2012 parliamentary election.
During the 2014 Crimean crisis he introduced a bill which proposed to consider the participants of "separatist rallies for joining Russia" - as well as those who obstruct the movement of soldiers and military equipment - saboteurs and accomplices of the occupiers. At the time of "military aggression" to them should be applied the death penalty. The bill provides the introduction of a visa regime with Russia, denunciation of the agreements with this country, the prohibition of the Communist Party of Ukraine and the Party of Regions, the call for the EU to ban the entry of Crimean residents with Russian passports and other events.[nb 1]
During the 2014 pro-Russian conflict in Ukraine and 2 days before the May 25, 2014 presidential election Lyashko claimed responsibility for the storming of a local government building in Torez (by "Soldiers from the Lyashko Battalion 'Ukraine'") that killed a pro-Russian separatist and supporter of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic while critically wounding another. Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International have condemned the activities of the Lyashko Battalion 'Ukraine' and Lyashko's actions in Eastern Ukraine. Amnesty International, while noting "abuses perpetrated by both sides of the conflict," pointed to Lyashko as "one particularly errant MP." (published as videos on his website). According to Lyashko his actions should be seen as citizen's arrests and he accused Amnesty International of being "obviously biased".
Lyashko was elected into the Kiev City Council since his party won 3 seats and he headed its party list in the 2014 Kiev local election. But he decided not to become a deputy in the Kiev City Council.
Cooperation with Rinat Akhmetov
In 2013, Oleh Lyashko described Rinat Akhmetov as the guarantor of Ukraine's independence. In 2016, special investigation conducted by Radio Liberty (Ukraine) recorded the facts of secret meetings between Oleh Lyashko and Rinat Akhmetov. In February 2018, the former director of a Mariupol factory belonging to the Metinvest group, Yuriy Zinchenko headed the executive committee of the Radical Party of Oleh Lyashko. On May 9, 2018, the journalist of Ukrayinska Pravda Oleksiy Bratushchak published the blog "Lyashko becomes Akhmetov's talisman", in which Oleh Lyashko was directly accused in cooperation with Akhmetov. Lyashko makes frequent appearances during broadcasts of TV-channel "Ukraine", which belongs to Akhmetov. As media expert Natalia Lihacheva, Chairman of "Detector Media" NGO stated: "According to our monitoring, there is almost no day when Lyashko does not appear there for any reason".
Family and personal life
On 2 June 2018, Lyashko married Rosita Aleksandrovna Sayaranen, formalizing a 20-year partnership. The couple have one daughter, Vladislav Olehovna.
Lyashko's private life is surrounded by rumours that he is gay, something Lyashko has always firmly denied. In early October 2010 a video shot in 1993 was leaked to the Internet in which a young man who looks like Lyashko talks about having sexual relations with another man, a certain high-ranking official. Lyashko had been rumored to be gay for a long time before the video appeared. The day after the video was leaked he issued a statement accusing political opponents of doctoring the video using "modern technologies". And he stated "Personally, I have a traditional sexual orientation". In an interview in October 2012, Lyashko was told by a spoof interviewer that the reporter's friend believed Lyashko represented sexual minorities in parliament. Lyashko was handed a mobile phone, spoke to the supposed friend and then promised to beat his face in while being filmed on camera. Lyashko had stressed in May 2011 he had nothing against sexual minorities. In an interview in September 2015, he stated that being LGBT "is the choice of each individual. I can not condemn".
- The status of Crimea and of the city of Sevastopol is currently under dispute between Russia and Ukraine; Ukraine and the majority of the international community consider the Crimea to be an autonomous republic of Ukraine and Sevastopol to be one of Ukraine's cities with special status, while Russia, on the other hand, considers the Crimea to be a federal subject of Russia and Sevastopol to be one of Russia's three federal cities.
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