11:40 GMT +321 January 2018
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    PACE observers to attend parliamentary elections in Ukraine

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    KIEV, June 26 (RIA Novosti) - Observers from the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe will monitor parliamentary elections in Ukraine set for September 30, the head of the Ukrainian presidential secretariat said Tuesday.

    Viktor Baloga said President Viktor Yushchenko has received a letter confirming their attendance from the PACE president, Rene van der Linden.

    "A special delegation of 40 representatives is being put together to monitor the elections," he said.

    According to Baloga, the letter demonstrates the international community recognizes the need to hold early elections to the Supreme Rada as the only means of overcoming the political crisis in the country.

    "Europe, unlike certain Ukrainian politicians, has no doubt of the date September 30, and is already preparing to monitor the voting process. This is a clear sign to those political forces that would still like to spoil the elections: their hopes are in vain," Baloga said.

    Ukraine has been rocked by a power struggle between pro-Western Yushchenko, who has pledged to bring the country EU and NATO membership, and pro-Russian Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovych, who returned to politics last year, after his party won the majority of seats in parliament forming the ruling coalition.

    The latest crisis broke out when Yushchenko moved to dismiss the legislature after 11 opposition members defected to the ruling coalition in early April.

    Yushchenko and his arch rival Yanukovych agreed May 27 to hold snap elections on September 30 in a bid to end a protracted political crisis.

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