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Yanukovich may stage a comeback in Ukranian Parliamentary election

Written by: Staff
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Moscow, March 26 (UNI) Over 37 million registered voters are voting today in the parliamentary elections in the former Soviet republic of Ukraine, amid the rapidly falling rating of President Viktor Yushchenko, who came to power a year ago riding on the crest of the 'Orange Revolution'.

The parliamentary elections are being held for the first time following the recent amendments in Ukraine's constitution, stipulating transition from the presidential-parliamentary to parliamentary-presidential form of government in the country.

Four hundred and fifty parliamentary deputies will be elected in 225 electoral districts under a proportional representation electoral system - a new practice in Ukrainian parliamentary elections.

Forty-five parties and election coalitions have fielded their candidates in the elections.

Parties will have to cross a three-per cent-threshold of the votes in order to take up seats in the parliament.

The obvious frontrunners are the orange-clad supporters of pro-West Yushchenko from Our Ukraine party, which was fielding 390 candidates, and the Party of Regions, led by pro-Moscow Viktor Yanukovich.

Mr Yanukovich lost the re-run of the disputed 2004 presidential elections in Ukraine, but recently support for him has immensely grown, according to media reports.

While voting was in progress, the Ukrainian Voters' Committee said violations of the effective legislation had been registered at the parliamentary elections.

''There are instances of damaging ballot-boxes, voting outside booths and even exerting pressure on electors,'' the Committee said.

Mr Yanukovich told reporters after casting his ballot in Kiev that Ukraine would have good relations with Russia after the parliamentary elections.

UNI XC SC PC2041

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