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Key vote in Ukraine's parliament

Key vote in Ukraine's parliament
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The focus has switched to Ukraine’s parliament today in the ongoing crisis over the country’s disputed presidential election. Amid increasing signs that there could be some sort of re-run of the ballot following serious fraud allegations, the chamber is set to vote on a motion of no confidence in the government. It has been brought by liberal opposition leader Victor Yushchenko who claims he was robbed of victory.

He has flatly rejected an offer to settle for the prime minister’s post, if the original election result is allowed to stand. The proposition was put forward by the current premier, Moscow-backed Victor Yanokovich, who was declared the winner of the controversial vote. Looking increasingly isolated, he also said that if a new poll was to be held, neither he nor Yushchenko should take part.

That prospect was equally rejected by his pro-Western rival and Yushchenko’s supporters who believe victory is in their sights. Parliament has already declared the November 21 ballot invalid and yesterday even the outgoing president Leonid Kuchma bowed to pressure and added his voice to calls for the election to be held again. That however is a matter for Ukraine’s Supreme Court to decide and its ruling could still be days away.