President Viktor Yushchenko on Wednesday met with foreign diplomats accredited to Ukraine to thank them for supporting the country’s bid to resolve its political crisis in a democratic manner, President’s press office informs.

Yushchenko assured the diplomats the Verkhovna Rada “has no authority.” “I want you to send this message to your capitals. From now on, the deputies of the fifth convocation can continue to perform only those of their functions that have no direct relation to the authorities to Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine,” he said.

The president said the most important achievement was that “the crisis is being settled through democratic, nonviolent and lawful means: “We are following our tradition to resolve the most difficult problems in a civilized way.”

Yushchenko said the crisis would be over after early parliamentary elections. “An early election is a legitimate, democratic and civilized mechanism which has no signs of political or legal emergency.”

The head of state said his June 5 decree to hold snap elections on September 30 was in line with his May 27 deal with Prime Minister Yanukovych and Speaker Moroz. “My decision is consistent with the constitution and is based on article 82 of Ukraine’s supreme law and the October 17/2002 ruling by the Constitutional Court of Ukraine,” he said, adding that his decree was valid and thus binding.

Yushchenko described the September poll as an important key to the country’s stabilization, expressing hopes it would help “bridge all the differences and create a necessary background to renew and accelerate economic, social and constitutional reforms.”

The president said he would ignore those who seek to disrupt last month’s agreement, calling some actions and statements by the governing coalition “counterproductive. “If the agreement is breached, it will be the fault of the leaders of the Verkhovna Rada. It seems someone wants to resume this conflict to save their posts and immunity,” he said.

Yushchenko pledged to make sure lawmakersin the country’s new parliament have no absolute immunity and promised to conduct the snap poll in a fair and democratic manner. “As President, I will allow no abuse of authority, no administrative pressure, falsifications and sabotage. Such things are criminally prosecutable,” he said, inviting international observers to monitor the September election.

“Ukraine is grateful to all its partners for their support and understanding,” he said, adding, however, that "any attempt tomeddle in our affairs will be regarded as unacceptable.”


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