The Ukrainian parliament has given a boost to embattled president Viktor Yuschenko, backing his choice for a new prime minister.
It was Yuschenko’s second attempt to win approval for his favoured candidate. On Tuesday parliament rejected the nomination of Yuri Yekhanurov by a narrow majority.
A longstanding ally of the president, Yekhanurov is considered a middle of the road politician. He won approval from close to two thirds of the assembly – well above the required majority.
Yuschenko made concessions to opponents including a reduction in the size of his secretariat and consulted parliamentary leaders to ensure he had enough votes for his candidate. Yekhanurov replaces former prime minister Yulia Tymoshenko, whose government collapsed amid corruption allegations two weeks ago.
The falling-out between the two leaders, less than a year after they spearheaded “Orange Revolution” protests, had brought the country to the brink of crisis.
But yesterday Tymoshenko said she was ready to forget past differences and work with the president to form a new ruling coalition.