Wednesday, 21 August, 2019

Ukraine’s president is sworn in, dissolves parliament

Ukrainian President-elect Volodymyr Zelenskiy greeds supporters before his inauguration ceremony in Kiev Ukraine Zelenskiy Sworn In As Ukrainian President, Says He's Dissolving Parliament
Patty Aguilar | 20 May, 2019, 22:22

Comedian Volodymyr Zelensky steps into his new role as Ukrainian president with his inauguration on Monday, launching a new era for the country wracked by war and economic difficulties.

"I have made a decision to resign after holding the government's next meeting on Wednesday", he said at a reporters' briefing in Kiev on Monday. He said that he wants to negotiate peace in Donbass, even if it risks losing his post.

Zelensky also emphasized that he is ready to open a dialogue to reach a ceasefire in Donbass, insisting that prisoners should be returned.

Even setting a date for his inauguration took weeks of negotiations, with Zelensky exasperatedly calling lawmakers "petty crooks".

Volodymyr Zelensky, whose Servant of People party has no representation in the current parliament, also used his inaugural address to promise an end to the war in the east of the country and asked MPs to fire several key officials including the current defence minister.

Petro Poroshenko, who was running for his second five-year term, received just 25% of the votes.

He broke with tradition and headed to the swearing-in ceremony on foot, high-fiving and taking selfies with supporters along the way.

Zelensky, a comedian who previously played the president of Ukraine in a television series, had no real-life political experience prior to his presidential run.

At first presser Modi diverts questions to Shah
His main rival is Rahul Gandhi, 48, of the Congress party, the scion of India's famed Nehru-Gandhi dynasty. The BJP has firmed up alliances with regional parties in case the majority mark eludes it.

Djokovic 'never lost faith' after Del Potro scare
We haven't seen players able to do that to Rafa on odd occasions on this surface. "It's not a drama to lose in semi-finals". In the women's draw, Konta booked her first semi-final in Rome with a 6-3 3-6 6-1 win over Czech Marketa Vondrousova .

Multiple polls give BJP an edge in State
Indian stock markets and the rupee were sharply higher on expectation the business-friendly Modi would stay on at the helm. The BJP won 282 seats of parliament's 543 elected seats in its 2014 landslide triumph and with allies had 336 seats.

Some critics claimed his run was backed by controversial Ukrainian oligarch Igor Kolomoysky, whose channel broadcasts his shows.

So far little is known about his precise policies after a campaign that capitalized on public disillusionment with the political establishment and promised to "break the system".

Moscow has been accused of militarily supporting the separatists, and Putin this month ordered an easing of procedures for Ukrainians living in the eastern separatist regions to gain Russian citizenship, a challenge to the new Ukrainian leader.

The young president is under pressure to rein in the wealthy oligarchs who wield significant influence in Ukraine, tackle widespread corruption and a stagnant economy.

He ended his remarks by saying: "Glory to Ukraine!".

Ukrainian new President Volodymyr Zelenskiy, background center, speaks to the parliament during his inauguration ceremony in Kiev, Ukraine, May 20, 2019.

Zelenskiy is hoping to ride the wave of his electoral success to get his supporters into parliament. His party now has no seats.

Elections to the Supreme Rada were scheduled for October 27, which raised the prospect of Zelenskiy struggling to enact his agenda in the face of a hostile parliament over his first few months in power.

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