Ukraine President Discounts Top Court

KIEV, Ukraine -- Pro-Western President Viktor Yushchenko, pressing for a quick parliamentary election, intends to ignore any ruling on his decrees by Ukraine’s highest constitutional authority, a top official said yesterday.

Ukraine President Viktor Yushchenko

Yushchenko and his rival from the 2004 “Orange Revolution”, Moscow-friendly Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovich, have long been at odds over a division of powers.

Yushchenko has issued two decrees to dissolve parliament and call an election to the assembly.

The prime minister initially ignored them and asked the Constitutional Court for an assessment.

Both men pledged for a time to abide by any ruling and agreed to hold a poll – though differences remain over when it should take place.

Presidential chief of staff Viktor Baloga said that Yushchenko would not be bound by any Constitutional Court ruling.

“As the Constitutional Court can shamelessly ignore the laws of Ukraine, it has ruled itself out from the process of settling the political crisis,” Baloga was quoted as saying in a statement from the president’s office.

Constitutional Court chairman Ivan Dombrovsky resigned on Thursday and the court replaced him with another judge – one of three dismissed by the president in the past month.

Commentators have said it is uncertain the court will issue a ruling which might in any case have little bearing on events.

Yushchenko accuses his rivals in a working group tasked with settling details of the election of stalling and has threatened to force a date through the powerful National Security Council.

The president had been due to chair a council meeting yesterday, but it was postponed to allow the group to work further.

The president’s second decree set an election date of June 24 and he wants a vote as soon as possible.

The prime minister says it is impractical to hold the poll before autumn.

Source: Gulf Times