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Ukraine's Yushchenko Assures Bush Western Integration Policies to Continue

Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko has assured President Bush that recent political developments in Ukraine will in no way affect his country's hopes to eventually join NATO and the European Union.

In a statement, Saturday, the Ukrainian presidency said the two men had spoken by telephone. The statement quoted Mr. Yushchenko as telling Mr. Bush his recent actions were aimed at consolidating democracy and making Ukraine's government more efficient.

Thursday, Mr. Yushchenko dismissed Prime Minister Yulija Tymoshenko, one of the key figures behind the "Orange Revolution," the popular movement that brought him to power early this year.

The Ukrainian president also dismissed the entire cabinet amid reports of government infighting and allegations of official fraud. He named senior regional official Yuri Yekhanurov acting prime minister.

Ms. Tymoshenko says she and her supporters plan to run their own candidates in next year's parliamentary elections.

Some information for this report provided by AFP and AP.