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KIEV, December 7. /TASS/. Lawmakers from parliamentary factions and committees of Ukraine's Verkhovna Rada will meet on Monday, December 8, to discuss the country’s potential withdrawal from the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), a loose alliance of former Soviet republics, Vitaly Kovalchuk from the Pyotr Poroshenko Bloc faction said on Sunday.
“On Monday, the conciliation council of heads of factions and committees of the Verkhovna Rada will discuss Ukraine’s withdrawal from the CIS,” Kovalchuk told a Ukrainian television channel.
The statement comes after a draft resolution on terminating Ukraine’s membership of the CIS and its bodies was submitted to the Ukrainian parliament on Thursday. The bill was initiated by a group of deputies, including the leader of the Batkivshchina party, Yulia Timoshenko, and member of the party’s Political Council’s Presidium, Boris Tarasyuk.
Earlier this month, the Ukrainian government abolished the office of a special commissioner for cooperation with Russia, the CIS, EurAsEC and other regional associations.
President Petro Poroshenko earlier recalled his envoy to the CIS, Anatoly Dron, but a spokesman for the Belarusian Foreign Ministry later described this move as “purely technical.”
The CIS was founded by the leaders of Russia, Belarus and Ukraine on December 8, 1991. At the moment the organisation groups 11 former Soviet states, including Ukraine. Belarus took over the CIS presidency this year when Ukraine last spring refused to perform the functions of the CIS president.