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UKRAINIAN ANTIPRESIDENTIAL FORCES SET UP ELECTORAL BLOC. Former Deputy Prime Minister Yuliya Tymoshenko will lead a newly created National Salvation Forum electoral bloc of opposition parties in parliamentary elections next year, Interfax reported on 10 July. The founding declaration of the bloc was signed by Tymoshenko (Fatherland Party), Anatoliy Matviyenko (Sobor Party), Vasyl Onopenko (SocialDemocratic Party), Levko Lukyanenko (Republican Party), Stepan Khmara (Conservative Republican Party), Oles Serhiyenko (Christian Democratic Party), and a representative of the Patriotic Party. The bloc declares it will seek to win the elections, form a government, and oust President Leonid Kuchma. Tymoshenko told journalists that her bloc is going to propose "peaceful coexistence or cooperation" during the parliamentary elections to Socialist Party leader Oleksandr Moroz and former Premier Viktor Yushchenko. Moroz commented that the Socialist Party will not compete with the National Salvation Forum bloc in next year's elections. JM
UKRAINE'S ELECTION OFFICIAL URGES NEW ELECTION LAW. Mykhaylo Ryabets, the head of the Central Electoral Commission, told journalists on 10 July that it will be "simply impossible" to conduct next year's parliamentary election campaign under the current election law, Interfax reported. According to Ryabets, neither his commission nor any other body will be able to control the election campaign and prevent mass violations of election procedures since the current election law does not provide for clear-cut election regulation mechanisms. President Kuchma has already vetoed three election bills passed by the parliament this year (see "RFE/RL Newsline," 9 July 2001). JM
UKRAINE TO EXPORT ELECTRICITY THROUGH MOLDOVA. Ukrainian Prime Minister Anatoliy Kinakh and his Moldovan counterpart Vasile Tarlev on 10 July agreed to deliver Ukrainian electricity through the Moldovan territory to Mediterranean countries, Interfax reported. The two sides signed five bilateral accords, including on customs cooperation and cooperation between business organizations. Tarlev pledged to pay off some $900,000 in railroad transport debts to Ukraine, and to decrease railway tariffs for Ukrainian cargo loads through Moldova to the Ukrainian port of Reni. Meanwhile, Russian-Ukrainian talks about the coupling of both countries' power grids -- which was agreed on by Ukrainian President Kuchma and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin in February -- have ended in deadlock. According to ITAR-TASS, Kyiv does not want to lift restrictions on Russian electricity supplies or discuss commercial terms of Russian electricity transit through Ukraine to third countries. JM