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Ukraine's PM Yatsenyuk reiterates he is not going to resign

February 19, 21:40 UTC+3
"The president has never called on me to resign. He called for — just have a closer look at his address — reshaping the government. But political forces started to harp on that [resignation]," he says
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Ukraine’s Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk

Ukraine’s Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk

© AP Photo/Sergei Chuzavkov

KIEV, February 19. /TASS/. Ukraine’s Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk has once again said he is not going to resign.

"The president has never called on me to resign. He called for — just have a closer look at his address — to reshape the government. But political forces started to harp on that [resignation]," Yatsenyuk said in a televised interview on Friday.

Before the government report at the Verkhovna Rada (parliament) on February 16, Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko came out with an address to the nation where he said that the parliament coalition and the people lost confidence in the government. "Therapy is not enough now, surgery is needed. The moment for a partial reshaping of the cabinet of ministers has been lost," the president said, adding that Yatsenyuk "still has a possibility to choose" how to act further.

"Obviously, he meant a complete reset of the government rather than resignation," Yatsenyuk said. In his words, he called on the parliament on Tuesday to vote no-confidence to the government. "It is the same procedure as when a minister tenders his resignation. But the lawmakers took a different decision," he said.

"So, this is a closed chapter and we’d better speak about the future," he added.

He pledged he is ready to reshape the cabinet. He admitted however that much will depend on whether the two remaining coalition members manage to talk Oleg Lyashko’s Radical Party into re-joining the coalition.

"I met with Lyashko the day before yesterday," the prime minister said. "We should finish talks with him to have the Radical Party re-join the coalition both actually and judicially. We signed an additional agreement and continued to work further."

The prime minister said there is still time not only to reshape the government and the coalition but also to outline tasks for the next 12 months.

Ukraine’s Radical Party quitted the coalition in the autumn of 2015. Following the Verkhovna Rada’s failure to send the Yatsenyuk government to resignation on February 16, another faction, Batkivshchina (Fatherland), and a number of lawmakers with the pro-presidential Petro Poroshenko Bloc and Samopomoshch (Sel-assistance) also withdrew from the coalition stripping it of the majority of 226 votes needed to pass decisions.

Under the Rada regulations, the current parliament has one month to form a new coalition. If it fails to do that, the president will have the right to dissolve the parliament. The head of state however is not obliged to do it. President Poroshenko has already said he will dissolve the parliament only as a last resort.

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