Parliament has given preliminary approval to amendments to the Constitution on the dates of the next presidential and parliamentary elections.
Some 305 out of 332 MPs that participated in the vote supported relevant amendments to the Ukrainian Constitution on Friday. Nine MPs voted against the amendments. Among those who supported the amendments were 179 MPs from the Regions Party, ten from the BYT, 41 from the OU-PSD faction, 26 from the Communist Party, 20 from the Bloc of Lytvyn and 29 independent MPs.
The chairman of the temporary special commission on draft laws amending the constitution, First Vice Speaker Adam Martyniuk, noted that the parliament sent this draft law to the Constitutional Court to receive a conclusion and the court had ruled that the draft law corresponds to the main law.
The draft law envisages that the president of Ukraine, the Verkhovna Rada, the Supreme Council of Crimea, deputies of local councils of all levels, and village, town, city heads are elected for five years. The bill also proposes holding regular presidential elections on the last Sunday of March of the fifth year of the president's term, the parliamentary elections on the last Sunday of October of the fifth year of the parliament's term, and the local elections on the last Sunday of October of the fifth year of the terms of deputies of local councils of all levels and village, town, city heads.
According to transitional provisions, the next parliamentary election is to be held in October 2012 and the presidential election in March 2015.
According to the constitution, the final vote for the amendments to the constitution is to be held next session (which begins on the first Tuesday of February 2011).
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