The Ukrainian Electoral Commission has formally declared Viktor Yushchenko the winner of last month’s presidential poll re-run. To cheers of delight, the Electoral Commission chief announced live on television that Yushchenko had won nearly 52 percent of the vote, compared to his opponent Viktor Yanokovich’s 44 percent.
Aides to Yanokovich have pledged to lodge an appeal against the result but the Supreme Court has already rejected four challenges from the former prime minister.
Yushchenko won the December 26 re-run – held after the Supreme Court upheld his challenge that the previous election had been rigged in his rival’s favour. But with huge levels of support in the east for Yanokovich, many political analysts believe Yushchenko will have his work cut out over the coming months to bring a sense of unity to the divided country.