President accepts Prime Minister Mykola Azarov's resignation after Ukraine repeals anti-protest laws
Premier says he wants to encourage 'social-political compromise'
Ukraine's president has accepted Prime Minister Mykola Azarov's resignation just hours parliament repealed its controversial anti-protest laws.
President Viktor Yanukovych accepted his resignation in a statement relased today. However, he has asked Mr Azarov to stay on in an acting role until a new government is formed.
The vote on Tuesday to repeal the anti-protest laws came hours after Prime Minister Mykola Azarov submitted his resignation. This morning parliament opened a special session to vote on whether to repeal anti-protest laws imposed last month, which fuelled clashes between anti-government protesters and police.
In a statement this morning on the government website, Mykola Azarov offered his resignation in order to encourage what he called “social-political compromise.”
"Today the most important thing is to preserve the unity and integrity of Ukraine. This is far more important than any personal plans or ambitions. That is why I have taken this decision," he said.
Because of Ukraine's constitution, if the President accepts his resignation, then the whole government resigns.
Anti-government protesters clash with policemen in Kiev on Friday night as the protests continue in Ukraine
Ukraine has been gripped by protests for two months and the crisis was aggravated in recent days after protesters and police clashed violently. Protests began on 21 November when President Viktor Yanukovych chose closer ties with Russia and spurned a political and trade agreement with the EU.
On Monday, President Viktor Yanukovych offered to give opposition leaders top government posts, make amendments to the constitution, and allow an amnesty for detained protesters.
The prime minister's resignation would remove one of the most unpopular figures among the opposition and repealing the anti-protest laws would remove a major aggravating factor in the crisis. But they do not meet all opposition demands, which include Mr Yanukovych's resignation.
In addition, Mr Yanukovych says an amnesty for dozens of protesters arrested in the demonstrations will only be implemented only if protesters leave the streets and vacate buildings that they have occupied. Ending the protests without having other demands met appears unlikely.
Additional reporting by Associated Press
Diving in at the deep end is no excuse for shirking the style stakes
- 2 Loom bands: Bids for dress made from colourful rubber pass £170,000 on eBay
- 3 Why I'm on the brink of burning my Israeli passport
- 4 L'Oreal cuts ties with Belgium supporter Axelle Despiegelaere after hunting trip photographs
- 5 The true Gaza back-story that the Israelis aren’t telling this week
Game of Thrones author George RR Martin says 'f*** you' to fans who fear he will die before finishing Westeros saga
Loom bands: Bids for dress made from colourful rubber pass £170,000 on eBay
Supermoon 2014: When and why will the moon look bigger and brighter this summer?
Gaza-Israel conflict: The terrible price Palestinian children are paying for Israel’s war with Hamas
Iraq crisis: Government forces execute 255 Sunni prisoners in revenge for Isis atrocities, says report
Sustained immigration has not harmed Britons' employment, say government advisers
War is war: Why I stand with Israel
7/7 memorial defaced on anniversary of 2005 attacks with ‘Blair lied thousands died’ graffiti
Australia facing international condemnation after turning around Sri Lankans at sea
Even when it brutalises one of its own teenage citizens, America is helpless against Israel
Socialist Worker called to apologise over ‘vile’ article saying Eton schoolboy Horatio Chapple's death is ‘reason to save the polar bears’
£70000 per annum: Harrington Starr: Information Security Manager (ISO 27001, A...
£30000 - £45000 per annum + Benefits + Bonus: Harrington Starr: C# Developer (...
£60000 - £80000 per annum + Benefits + Bonus: Harrington Starr: C# Integration...
£75000 - £85000 per annum + ex bens: Deerfoot IT Resources Limited: Biztalk Te...