President Viktor Yanukovich’s Party of the Regions rushed
the bill through parliament this month using a procedural trick,
in what opponents saw as an attempt to rally public support in
Russian-speaking regions ahead of an October parliamentary
But the move backfired as hundreds of protesters poured on
to the streets of Kiev and clashed with riot police.
Parliament speaker Volodymyr Lytvyn refused to sign the
bill, a step needed before Yanukovich could sign it into law.
The chamber then went into recess until September.