Yanukovich Is Proposed As Ukraine's Top Minister

KIEV, Ukraine -- Ukraine's main opposition party joined together Friday with two other groups in Parliament and the new coalition proposed the pro-Russian party's leader, Viktor Yanukovich, as PM.

Viktor Yanukovich - the Kremlin's favourite son for Ukraine PM

Yanukovich was the Kremlin-backed opponent of President Viktor Yushchenko in the 2004 presidential election that sparked the mass protests dubbed the Orange Revolution. Yanukovich won the election, but it was declared invalid and Yushchenko was elected in a court-ordered repeat vote.

Leaders of the opposition Party of Regions signed the coalition deal Friday with the Socialist and Communist parties. The deal came hours after the collapse of a coalition of liberal parties backing the Orange Revolution consisting of Yushchenko's Our Ukraine party, the Socialists and the party of former Prime Minister Yulia Tymoshenko.

Political turmoil that has gripped the country since March parliamentary elections is showing no signs of abating.

The Western-leaning Orange coalition fell apart in acrimony earlier Friday, less than a month after its formation, prolonging the political turmoil that has gripped the former Soviet republic since March parliamentary elections and boosting the fortunes of the pro-Russian opposition.

The split, which occurred after the Socialist Party broke ranks to get its leader elected as Parliament speaker, led to a swift realignment of forces, resulting in the Party of Regions - which won the most seats in the elections but not a majority - joining with the Socialists and Communists.

"The doors are open for everyone," Yanukovich said in Parliament. Later, a senior lawmaker from the Party of Regions, Taras Chornovil, said that his party had proposed Yanukovich for the prime minister's job.

The Socialists earlier said they were ready to join a broad coalition that included Yushchenko's Our Ukraine party. The Socialist leader and the Parliament speaker, Oleksandr Moroz, called for a "wide coalition, as today we cannot continue a policy that divides Ukraine."

Ukraine has been without a new government since the March vote, and Yushchenko warned that he could dissolve Parliament - a move that would lead to new elections - if a government was not formed within a constitutionally mandated period that ends July 20.

After weeks of tense bargaining, the three parties involved in the 2004 Orange Revolution agreed last month to form a coalition under a deal that would give Yushchenko's Our Ukraine party the speaker's post and return the prime minister's job to his estranged ally, Tymoshenko.

But lawmakers on Thursday unexpectedly elected Moroz as speaker, provoking accusations of betrayal from Yushchenko's and Tymoshenko's parties. The president's party declared the Orange coalition over, blaming the Socialists for joining up with the Communists and Party of Regions.

Yushchenko left it unclear whether his party would consider joining with the Party of Regions. He said that "today a broader coalition would be more realistic."

Source: International Herald Tribune

Comments

Anonymous said…
Communism is not dead! It's alive and well in Ukraine...

Now Mr. Yushchenko, you see what you have done, thanks to your foot dragging!

What was the purpose of the 'Orange Revolution'?

Did a million people freeze their asses in Independence Square, for nothing?
Anonymous said…
But why so many people have vote for Party of Regions ?

Really stupid