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Ukraine’s parliament approves Tymoshenko as PM

Ukraine’s parliament elected Yulia Tymoshenko as prime minister Tuesday.

Tymoshenko was supported by 226 lawmakers in the 450-member legislature, just the number required to be prime minister. Tymoshenko, 47, was named as prime minister by President Viktor Yushchenko on Dec. 6. But she failed in her bid for premiership last Tuesday, backed only by 225 deputies. The president re-nominated her as prime minister on Dec. 12. Tymoshenko, with her trademark peasant braid and designer outfits, stood firmly at Yushchenko’s side during the 2004 protests. She became prime minister in February 2005 after Yushechenko won a re-run presidential election, but was fired by him seven months later. The two reconciled this year during a standoff with outgoing Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovych, who has pursued more Moscow-friendly policies. A snap parliamentary election was held in September to resolve months of political crisis in the country. In September’s polls, Yulia Tymoshenko’s Bloc garnered 156 seats in the 450-seat chamber and formed with the pro-president Our Ukraine-Self Defence Bloc a shaky majority coalition. (people.com.cn)