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Ukraine's Samopomich faction goes into opposition in parliament

February 19, 2016, 9:09 UTC+3 KIEV

After a failed parliament vote for the resignation of Arseniy Yatsenyuk, the Batkivshchyna faction of Yulia Tymoshenko and Self-Help announced their withdrawal from the ruling coalition

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© Maxim Nikitin/TASS

KIEV, February 19. /TASS/. The Samopomich (Self-Help) faction that has left the ruling coalition in the Ukrainian Verkhovna Rada (parliament) will now play the opposition role, the faction’s leader Oleh Berezyuk said on Friday.

"Today, by and large, when we stopped our activity in the coalition, we are beginning to build an opposition force that is a counterbalance and will offer alternative ways for the development of the Ukrainian state, it will support the decisions that we believe are right and the government or the coalition will implement them, or the decisions which will be offered by the Ukrainian president," he said on the 112 Ukraine TV channel.

The leader of the faction also said that he understood the opposition activity "not as criticism, but doing twice as much work." "On the one hand, it is the search for alternative, better solutions, and on the other - analyzing the existing ones and either supporting them or not," Berezyuk said.

This week, after a failed vote in the Verkhovna Rada for the resignation of Prime Minister of Ukraine Arseniy Yatsenyuk, the Batkivshchyna (Fatherland) faction of Yulia Tymoshenko and Self-Help announced their withdrawal from the ruling coalition. Thus, the deputies’ alliance created under the leadership of the Petro Poroshenko Bloc has ceased to exist, having lost the majority of votes. Previously, the Radical Party faction withdrew from the coalition due to differences over the country’s constitutional reform.

The ruling coalition in the eighth Verkhovna Rada elected on 26 October 2014 was formed from five parties - Petro Poroshenko Bloc, Samopomich, Batkivshchyna, Radical Party and People’s Front. On 1 September 2015, head of the Radical Party Oleh Lyashko announced the party’s exit from the coalition. After Yatsenyuk’s government survived a no-confidence vote on February 16, Batkivshchina left the coalition along with several deputies from the Petro Poroshenko Bloc.

After Samopomich’s exit, the coalition loses the majority vote in the parliament - 226 votes. According to existing regulations, the parliament has a month to form a new coalition with the majority vote. If this does not happen, the Verkhovna Rada will be dissolved, and snap elections will be announced.

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