26 February, 22:49

Ukraine protest leaders announce Yatsenyuk as PM, nominate key ministers

Ukraine protest leaders announce Yatsenyuk as PM, nominate key ministers

Ukraine's pro-EU protest leader Arseniy Yatsenyuk was on Wednesday picked to head the government of the crisis-hit country until presidential elections are held in May. The 'Euromaidan' council made its announcement of Yatseniuk, plus candidates for several other key ministers, after its members addressed crowds on Kiev's Independence Square.

Oleksander Turchinov, acting president since Yanukovich was toppled on Saturday by parliament, said the new government would have to take unpopular decisions to head off default and guarantee a normal life for Ukraine's people.

The Euromaidan's proposals have to be approved by parliament.

The council, made up of popular figures from the uprising which brought Yanukovich down, named career diplomat Andriy Deshchytsya, a former ambassador in Finland and in Iceland, as foreign minister.

Oleksander Shlapak, a former economy minister and former deputy head of the central bank, was named as finance minister.

Andriy Paruby, head of the "self-defence" force protecting the Kiev protest zone from police action during the three months of conflict, was named secretary of the powerful National Security and Defence Council.

"This is a government which is doomed to be able to work only for 3-4 months ... because they will have to take unpopular decisions", Turchinov said.

This would involve heading off default, establishing the trust of creditors and investors and guaranteeing a normal life for Ukraine's people.

"They will be criticised. They'll have mud smeared on them. But they'll have to fulfil their duty and be burned for the sake of Ukraine," he said.

Ukraine's Yatsenyuk says new government to resort to unpopular measures

Ukraine is standing on the brink of a disaster and its new government will have to resort to unpopular measures, Arseny Yatsenyuk, one of the leaders of the irreconcilable opposition and the incumbent candidate to the Prime Minister’s post said in an interview with the BBC.

He voiced the confidence that Ukraine would remain a united country and he promised to put his best efforts into keeping up that unity, which is currently going through a harsh trial test.

Yatsenyuk explained for exigency of tough austerity measures by apportioning all blame for the situation to the decisions taken by the previous government.

He called the "cabinet of people’s trust", which is in the phase of formation now, a government of political self-killers.

Ukrainian parliament appoints presidential chief of staff

Ukrainian Verkhovna Rada Chairman and interim President Aleksandr Turchynov has instructed deputy presidential chief of staff Oleg Rafalsky to perform the duties of the presidential chief of staff. A decree appointing Rafalsky acting presidential chief of staff is dated February 26.

Earlier on Wednesday, Turchynov had dismissed Andriy Klyuyev as presidential chief of staff. A decree on Klyuyev's dismissal dated February 26 is available on the interim president's official website. Klyuyev, who served as presidential chief of staff under President Viktor Yanukovych, tendered his resignation on February 23, a fact that his press secretary Artem Petrenko confirmed to Interfax.

Also The Batkivshchyna party faction at the Ukrainian Verkhovna Rada has spoken in favor of Borys Tarasyuk's candidacy as foreign minister, Lesya Orobets of the Batkivshchyna faction said on Facebook.

"The faction has supported Borys Tarasyuk's candidacy for foreign minister. At this difficult time, quick and efficient team play is a priority," she said. Orobets also denied that she had been offered the foreign minister's office. Tarasyuk had earlier served as Ukrainian foreign minister in 1998-2000 and in 2005-2007.

After the unification of part of the Popular Rukh of Ukraine, which he headed, and the Batkivshchyna association in June 2013, Tarasyuk was elected a deputy leader of Batkivshchyna.

Voice of Russia, AFP, Reuters, TASS

Read also:

- Ukrainian opposition right-wing fascists have no place in EU - expert

- Situation in Ukraine 'might be a start of real civil war' - lawyer

- Head of Ukrainian Interior Ministry signs order to dissolve "Berkut"

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