Novelist Paulo Coelho denies endorsing Ukraine's ex-PM Tymoshenko
DAVOS, Switzerland – Brazilian novelist Paulo Coelho has denied endorsing Ukraine's ex-prime minister Yulia Tymoshenko for the country's presidential election after a video in which he featured was shown during her nomination for the post.
"I never recorded any message supporting her current candidacy," Coelho tweeted late on Wednesday, January 23.
"Even if I like her as a person, Ukraine politics is none of my business," he said.
I never recorded any message supporting her current candidacy; even if I like her as a person, Ukraine politics is none of my business— Paulo Coelho (@paulocoelho) January 23, 2019
Ex-PM Tymoshenko launches bid for Ukraine presidency https://t.co/5bpuC4l2fK
Former NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen, whose comments were also shown in the video, joined Coelho in saying he had not recorded a message of support for Tymoshenko.
Rasmussen told Ukrainian TV channel Pryamyi, that his comments were not addressed to a specific candidate.
The film was shown at Tymoshenko's nationalist Batkivshchyna (Fatherland) party's congress on Tuesday after she had announced her presidential bid in the March election.
In it, Coelho called Tymoshenko a "strong person" who is "capable to run a country".
Speaking to the press at the World Economic Forum in Davos on Thursday, January 24, Tymoshenko said "journalists incorrectly commented" on the video, which she said was part of a biopic.
"It was an autobiographical film about the last 15 years of my life," Tymoshenko explained.
"The documentary footage was used there, which is, in my opinion, absolutely correct," she underlined.
Her press service told AFP that the video was shot in 2010 for a film about the Ukrainian politician called Yulia.
Tymoshenko has been a leading figure on the Ukrainian political scene for the past two decades, coming to international prominence through her role in the 2004 Orange Revolution.
She is favorite to win the March 31 vote in the latest polls, but no candidate yet has an unassailable lead.
The 58-year-old has 16% support in survey going into the two-round election, ahead of incumbent President Petro Poroshenko with 14% – Rappler.com