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Ukraine's Parliament Declares Presidential Election Invalid  - 2004-11-28


Ukraine's parliament has declared last Sunday's presidential run-off election invalid in a symbolic victory to the country's pro-western opposition.

Lawmakers noted many irregularities and said the balloting failed to reflect the intention of voters. They also expressed no confidence in Ukraine's central election commission, which had declared pro-Russian Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovych the victor.

The actions are not binding but give added weight to Monday's Supreme Court consideration of reports by the opposition and international monitors of widespread election fraud.

Tens of thousands of supporters of pro-western challenger Viktor Yushchenko have protested in Kiev and other cities against the election committee action.

Separately, tens of thousands of Yanukovych supporters also demonstrated today (Saturday) in the eastern city of Donetsk pledging to seek autonomy for their area if Mr. Yushchenko gains the presidency

The developments came as the new working group representing both sides met to seek a way out of the crisis.

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