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Ukraine President Demands Parliament Rescind Vote to Dismiss Government


Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko has demanded parliament rescind its vote to dismiss the government.

He spoke during a special meeting of the Cabinet Thursday and blamed the vote on opposition lawmakers he said are trying to create instability in Ukraine.

Lawmakers voted Tuesday to fire Prime Minister Yuri Yekhanurov's government over its agreement to pay sharply higher prices for gas imports from Russia. Top government officials say parliament's move was illegal.

Mr. Yushchenko had indicated readiness to bring the dismissal before the constitutional court. But lawmakers Thursday refused to confirm the president's nominees for constitutional court judges.

Ukraine has begun implementing a constitutional reform that gives authority to appoint and dismiss the government to the parliament instead of the president. However, the changes have been enacted only partially, pending parliamentary elections in March.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.