posted on Dec, 31 2004 @ 09:55 PM
In a major concession to his loss of the Ukrainian presidential election to Viktor Yushchenko, Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovych annouced his
resignation Friday. Yanukovych vowed to continue fighting, but admitted to not having much hope. Yanukovych's support was waning as many of his
backers and advisors left his side. His resignation also immediately disbands the 20-member cabinet.
Viktor Yanukovych announced his resignation as prime minister on Friday, handing Ukraine's pro-Western opposition a symbolic victory, but he vowed to
continue his court battle for the presidency of this ex-Soviet republic.
Meanwhile, Viktor Yushchenko, the winner of last week's repeat presidential election, and Georgian President Mikhail Saakashvili welcomed the New Year
side by side on Kiev's Independence Square, the epicenter of mass protests that overturned the political order in this nation of 48 million.
Yushchenko soundly won the court-ordered presidential revote on Sunday, but Yanukovych has refused to recognize the results and said he would
challenge them in the Supreme Court. Under Ukrainian law, Yushchenko cannot be declared president until all appeals are exhausted.
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This would appear to be a major indicator that Prime Minister Yanukovych knows he can't win the election, even on appeal. He was surely under
pressure to leave the government after the vote of no-confidence by Parliament on Dec. 1, and the withdrawal of support by outgoing President Leonid
Kuchma. Ukraine certainly needs the stability of a settled election, and the victory of Yushchenko
would be favorable to the West.
Related AboveTopSecret.com Discussion Threads:
POLITICS: Ukraines Yushchenko Declares Victory
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