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Ukraine's Parliament Approves Electoral Reforms, Constitutional Changes


Ukraine's parliament has overwhelmingly passed a series of bills that make changes in the constitution and election law in a move aimed at resolving an election crisis.

A total of 402 lawmakers in the 450-seat parliament voted Wednesday to approve the measures. They contain amendments pushed by outgoing President Leonid Kuchma, as well as changes to electoral law demanded by the opposition.

Changes in the election law are aimed at preventing the fraud prevalent in last month's presidential run-off. A rerun of that election is scheduled for December 26.

Lawmakers also approved amendments to Ukraine's constitution that will transfer some presidential powers to parliament.

Meanwhile, a NATO official says the military alliance has postponed ministerial talks with Ukraine until what it calls a "new and legitimate government" is in place in Kiev.

Some information for this report provided by AFP and Reuters.