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Two Ukrainian parties leave parliament coalition to trigger election

Thursday, 24 July 2014 - 3:47pm IST | Agency: Reuters

Two Ukrainian parties said on Thursday they had left a majority coalition in parliament to allow President Petro Poroshenko to call a new election and clear what one politician called "Moscow agents" from the chamber.

Politicians and activists have complained that while Ukraine has a new president, it has yet to elect a new parliament since the toppling of pro-Russian leader Viktor Yanukovich in February, and accuse his supporters of hampering its work.

"We believe that in the current situation, such a parliament which protects state criminals, Moscow agents, which refuses to strip immunity from those people who are working for the Kremlin, should not exist," Oleh Tyahnybok, leader of the nationalist Svoboda party, told parliament.

The Udar (Punch) party of former boxing champion Vitaly Klitschko - which along with Svoboda, the Batkivshchyna party and other deputies formed the majority coalition - also announced it was leaving the coalition.

According to the Ukrainian constitution, the parliament has 30 days to try to forge a new coalition. If that fails, the president then can dismiss parliament and call a new election.

(Reporting by Natalia Zinets, writing by Elizabeth Piper, editing by Timothy Heritage)




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