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Ukraine’s parliament votes to deprive Yanukovych of president’s title

February 04, 2015, 14:37 UTC+3
This is the first time Ukraine’s parliament has adopted such a decision, which will deprive Yanukovych of all the benefits that former leaders enjoy
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Viktor Yanukovych

Viktor Yanukovych

© ITAR-TASS/Mikhail Klimentyev

KIEV, February 4. /TASS/. Ukraine’s parliament on Wednesday has adopted a law on depriving Viktor Yanukovych of the president’s title.

A total of 281 lawmakers voted in favor of the law authored by four Verkhovna Rada deputies, above the required minimum of 226 votes.

This is the first time Ukraine’s parliament has adopted such a decision, which will deprive Yanukovych of all the benefits that former leaders enjoy.

The lawmakers said Yanukovych needs to be deprived of his title as he relieved himself of duties as Ukraine’s president "in an unconstitutional way," which threatened the country’s territorial integrity and sovereignty and led to "mass violations of rights and freedoms of citizens."

Yanukovych was elected as Ukraine’s president on February 25, 2010. On February 21, Yanukovych fled Kiev, denouncing what he called a violent coup in Ukraine. The next day the parliament voted to terminate his powers.

The authors of the law said Yanukovych relieved himself of duties and fled Ukraine "to avoid punishment for the criminal actions against human rights and freedoms."

However, the law defies the country’s constitution, which states that president’s powers can be terminated only in the following cases: resignation, failure to fulfill duties for health reasons, ousting from power following impeachment and death.

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