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Ukrainian parliament passes European integration bill on election legislation

November 21, 2013, 14:54 UTC+3 KIEV
Verkhovna Rada also intended to consider on Thursday in the second reading a bill on the prosecutor’s office and four bills on the issue of convicted ex-Prime Minister Yulia Timoshenko
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© EPA/Andrew Kravchenko

KIEV, November 21. /ITAR-TASS/. The Ukrainian Verkhovna Rada (parliament) on Thursday has passed a European integration bill on the election legislation. A total of 365 lawmakers voted for this document. The bill was passed without discussion.

The bill’s author, MP Dmitry Shpenov representing the Party of Regions said that the bill’s new version provided, among other things, for the registration of the majority candidates exclusively by the Central Election Commission (CEC). It is also prohibited to change the borders of constituencies during the election process, which was allowed at previous elections. “The CEC, no later than 175 days from the voting day shall publish on its official website a list of single-mandate constituencies, specifying their numbers, as well as the addresses of the premises of the related election commissions,” Shpenov said. “The procedure of “invalidation” of vote at polling stations is preserved in the current version of the bill,” he noted.

In addition, he said, it is proposed to set the requirement to make public the information about the advertising space cost, and the system of supervision over the media compliance with the election legislation requirements has been put in order. It is proposed to vest the CEC with the powers to register the candidates’ agents, because district election commissions are formed much later than the candidates’ registration.

The Verkhovna Rada also intended to consider on Thursday in the second reading a bill on the prosecutor’s office and four bills on the issue of convicted former Prime Minister Yulia Timoshenko.

Leader of the opposition faction Batkivshchina (Fatherland) Arseny Yatsenyuk said from the parliament rostrum that Timoshenko had called on the MPs to vote for all the European integration bills. “Yulia Vladimirovna also urged the faction to support any bill on the convicts’ medical treatment without discussion, for the sake of signing an association agreement between Ukraine and the EU,” Yatsenyuk said.

The heads of the European Parliament’s monitoring mission, Pat Cox and Aleksander Kwasniewski, were present in the Rada meeting hall. The European Parliament representatives have twice attended the Rada meetings this month.

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