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Ukraine's ruling party warns opposition leaders against escalating civilian confrontation

February 17, 2014, 18:08 UTC+3 KIEV
It reminded the opposition leaders that no one had ever authorized them or their supporters to represent the interest of all Ukrainians
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© EPA/SERGEY DOLZHENKO

KIEV, February 17. /ITAR-TASS/. Ukraine’s ruling Party of Regions has criticized as inadmissible the remarks made by Ukraine’s opposition leaders which, it believes, are designed to escalade civilian confrontation and further aggravate socio-political tensions in Ukraine, the Party of Region’s press service said on Monday.

A regular opposition meeting, which the opposition leaders call “narodnoye veche” or people’s assembly, held in Kiev on February 16 ended with another ultimatum to the authorities. In their speeches, the opposition leaders called for new radical actions and promised new street riots in case Verkhovnaya Rada (parliament) did not meet their demands, the Party of Regions said, adding that the opposition’s demands were not new.

“They demand changing Ukraine’s Constitution by one single vote in parliament in violation of all possible regulations and constitutional norms. A law-provided legal mechanism of gradually amending the fundamental law does not suit the opposition,” the Party of Regions went on to say.

The Party of Regions described as cynical the attempts of opposition leaders “to cover up their own career ambitions” by lofty words like “the will of the people” and “Maidan’s mandate” and pass off their desire to amend the Constitution as an expression of people’s will.

It reminded the opposition leaders that no one had ever authorized them or their supporters to represent the interest of all Ukrainians.

“The opposition is planning to organize an action which has no analogues in the history of domestic parliamentarianism right at Verkhovnaya Rada’s hall for plenary sessions and along parliament’s external perimeter,” the Party of Regions said in its statement.

Ukraine’s ruling party considers it to be its duty to warn the opposition against hasty and inconsiderate acts.

“The Party of Regions will not allow the opposition to turn parliament into another seat of socio-political destabilization and a new flashpoint on the map of Ukraine,” the party press service said.

Earlier on Monday, the leaders of party factions in the Ukrainian parliament failed to agree on amendments to the country’s Constitution, Speaker Vladimir Rybak told a conciliatory council of the leaders of parliamentary factions and groups on Monday.

“We have held three consultations this week but so far we have failed to agree on any bill that would return the 2004 Constitution. However, we do have three drafts which have conceptual differences,” parliamentary speaker Vladimir Rybak told a conciliatory council of the leaders of parliamentary factions and groups.

“What should parliament do next? Should it go ahead with the consultations or should we pass on to considering our work calendar?” Rybak asked, suggesting that a commission be created at parliament’s plenary session on Tuesday to finalize the proposals and select a draft that would go through parliament. If adopted, the draft will go to the Venice Commission which is expected to draw its conclusions. After that, the draft will be submitted for consideration to Ukraine’s Constitutional Court.

“The parliamentary majority is ready to consider all the proposals on constitutional amendments,” the speaker stressed.

Three opposition factions- Batkivshchina (Fatherland), UDAR (Punch) and Svoboda (Freedom) - have been insisting on amendments to Ukraine’s Constitution. The opposition wants to deprive the president of many of his powers and delegate them to parliament.

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