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You're reading: Fear and loathing in Ukraine’s new parliament (photos)
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The new
parliament, elected on Oct. 28, convened for the first time on Dec. 12. But
even a full working day was not enough to elect a speaker or confirm a prime
minister – the two key votes that were expected on the first day.

The
Verkhovna Rada members, however, vowed to stay in session all night on Dec. 12, if necessary, to  at least elect a new speaker. They failed.

The three
oppositional parties, which have a total of 178 out of the 445 filled seats in
parliament, managed to block most of the pro-presidential Party of Regions
initiatives. The oppositionists also persistently contested the forming of a
Communist Party faction of 33 deputies in parliament on technicalities,
highlighting the divisions within the new parliament and how difficult it will
be to find consensus.

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