Ukraine Rada To Continue Work Even If Dissolved By President

KIEV, Ukraine -- Ukraine's parliament voted Monday to continue its work even if the president decides to dissolve the Supreme Rada.

Viktor Yanukovich (C) in parliament

Despite the formation of a new parliamentary majority, led by the pro-Russian Party of Regions, and the nomination of its leader Viktor Yanukovych as prime minister last Tuesday, President Viktor Yushchenko has the power to dissolve the Rada if it fails to form a government by midnight.

The deadline will mark 60 days since the first sitting of the current parliament, elected in March.

More than a half of the 450-seat assembly (244 members) supported a resolution stating that, if the president launches consultations on dissolving parliament, the Rada should immediately hold a plenary session "to maintain constitutional law and order in Ukraine."

President Yushchenko has so far been hesitant to approve the nomination of Yanukovych, whom he defeated in a 2004 presidential rerun following protests against vote-rigging that came to be known as the "orange revolution".

However, the president also appears reluctant to use his power to dissolve the legislature and hold new elections, despite persistent calls from Yulia Tymoshenko, his main "orange" revolution ally.

Earlier on Monday, Tymoshenko's faction formally withdrew from the assembly to block the rival coalition's way to power. Her West-leaning bloc accounts for 125 seats - almost one-third of the assembly.

Source: RIA Novosti