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Ukraine's Supreme Court Examines Opposition Appeal


Ukraine's Supreme Court is reviewing the political opposition's claims that the recent presidential elections should be invalidated due to what they, and many in Europe and the United States, say was widespread electoral fraud.

The proceedings got under way with the political opposition presenting what they say is further evidence supporting their charges of widespread voter manipulation and fraud.

In a live broadcast on Ukrainian television's Channel Five, an opposition deputy asks the court to accept more than 40 documents as part of the overall examination of the claims.

The chairman of the court later accepted the opposition's request and took receipt of the documents, before adjourning for a break just two hours into the session.

Sunday, opposition deputies tried for hours to deliver the additional documents, but supporters of opposition candidate Viktor Yushchenko say there was no one at the court to handle their paperwork or respond to their phone calls.

A crowd of opposition supporters and pro-government demonstrators backing Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovych, who Ukraine's Election Commission named as winner, had blocked the way to Kiev's Supreme Court. A full road-block was put in place and the demonstrators peacefully agreed to move several hundred meters away from the building, as they await the court's expected results.

Opposition supporters say they hope the court will rule to hold new elections. Pro-Yanukovych supporters say if their candidate's declared win is annulled, and a new election called, they will start action in Ukraine's east to break away from central rule.

Massive street protests in Ukraine's capital and other cities to the west and east are entering a second week.

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