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Ukrainian President dissolves parliament, announces early elections

Poroshenko signed a decree setting the date of parliamentary elections in the country at October 26

KIEV, August 25, 23:23 /ITAR-TASS/. Ukrainian President Pyotr Poroshenko on Monday dissolved the Verkhovna Rada (parliament) and announced early legislative elections.

The president dissolved the Rada “as this is the only correct and responsible decision”, his spokesperson Svyatoslav Tsegolko said on Twitter.

Poroshenko urged “democratic political forces to run in the elections as a single pro-Ukrainian and pro-European team”.

The issue of elections popped up a month ago when the pro-government coalition broke up and the lawmakers failed to form a new coalition of at least 226 deputies within a month after that.

On August 22, Poroshenko held consultations with faction leaders, as required by the Constitution, before dissolving the parliament.

“No new coalition was formed within a month as stipulated by law, in which case the Constitution allows the president to dissolve the Verkhovna Rada,” Poroshenko said.

He said “80% of people support pre-term elections” and set their date for October 26.

The president said the elections were a part of this peace plan, a key element of which is “the political dialogue with Donbas [eastern Ukraine]”.

The elections will be held under existing legislation, according to which a half of the parliament is elected from parties and the other half in one-seat constituencies.