Ukrainian Supreme Court judges threatened after ruling; Yushchenko parallel government issues first decrees

[JURIST] Judges of the Ukrainian Supreme Court were reported by opposition sources Friday to have received threats after ordering a ban Thursday on publication of the country's disputed presidential election results pending their hearing of an opposition appeal. A parallel government set up by opposition leader Viktor Yushchenko has meanwhile published its first decrees as protestors took to the streets of Kyiv for the fifth day in a row and began blockading government buildings. BBC News has more on the protests and blockade. From Ukraine, the Kyiv Post has English translations of the first Yushchenko decrees online here, although the Post takes pains to note that the opposition authority "is not recognized under the Constitution, which says the acting president exercises power until his successor assumes office, and presidential powers can be terminated only on account of incapacitation, impeachment or death."

2:01 PM ET - In late developments in the Ukraine elections crisis, Yushchenko's opposition press office is reporting that according to Ukraine Channel 5, two members of the Central Election Commission have revoked their endorsement of the originally-certified election results. Lawyers with the Kyiv Judicial Association have also warned the authorities that any violent actions taken against protestors will constitute genocide under internationmal law. Finally, in the United States, AP has just reported that reinforcing earlier comments by Secretary of State Colin Powell and others, President Bush has warned that the international community is "watching carefully" as Ukraine deals with vote-fraud charges. As intense negotiations to resolve the crisis continue between government, oppositon and visiting international leaders, the website of outgoing President of Ukraine Leonid Kuchma provides English language updates on key meetings.

 

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