Ukraine's Ex-PM Urges Our Ukraine To Join Opposition

KIEV, Ukraine -- Ukraine's ex-Prime Minister Yuliya Tymoshenko said Tuesday her opposition party is looking forward to cooperating with the pro-presidential alliance Our Ukraine as soon as it finally opts for the opposition.

Yuliya Tymoshenko

Our Ukraine, a member of the anti-crisis parliamentary coalition, officially announced last Tuesday that it is switching to the opposition over major differences with the pro-Russian Party of Regions. But the party said it has still to decide on an opposition format.

"The Yuliya Tymoshenko Bloc is prepared to cooperate within the opposition with the pro-presidential bloc Our Ukraine," Tymoshenko said, regretting that the party has not decided whether it will remain in power or join the opposition.

Tymoshenko and her eponymous bloc went into opposition in late September after its first post-election coalition with Our Ukraine and the Socialist Party collapsed, giving way to a new alliance with the Party of Regions and burying her hopes for a new premiership.

Four ministers from Our Ukraine tendered their resignations Thursday, in line with the party decision to go into opposition and possibly form a shadow Cabinet.

But Our Ukraine seems to be experiencing a serious internal crisis as it adjourned its congress for three weeks to amend its strategy and undertake drastic reform in response to President Viktor Yushchenko's fierce criticism of inactivity over the weekend.

Efforts at forming a grand coalition by President Yushchenko's six-party bloc and Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovych's Party of Regions and its allies, the Socialist and Communist parties, have stalled. After two months of talks, the political forces still disagree on a series of crucial issues, including Yushchenko's drive to join NATO.

"This Mexican soap opera has to end. We are keeping our door and hands open. They only have to decide," Tymoshenko said, appealing to the former "orange" allies.

Source: RIA Novosti