[JURIST] Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko [official website; BBC profile] dismissed a second judge from the Ukrainian Constitutional Court [official website] Tuesday, just one day after dismissing [JURIST report] judge Valeriy Pshenichny for an "oath violation." Deputy Chairwoman and Justice Syuzanna Stanyk was dismissed Tuesday; Yushchenko has previously accused her of corruption. RFE/RL has more.
The court is currently considering the constitutionality of Yushchenko's decree [text; JURIST report] dissolving parliament and calling for new elections. He has since issued a second decree [JURIST report] moving the elections to late June. A majority of legislators objected to the decree, filing an appeal with the 18-judge Constitutional Court.
Yushchenko has insisted [JURIST report] that his dissolution decree was proper under the Ukrainian constitution [DOC text] and has said that officials who refuse to comply with his decree could face criminal prosecution [press release; JURIST report]. Yushchenko and current Prime Minister Viktor Yanukovych, who launched the legal challenge to the decree, were fierce rivals in the 2004 presidential election [JURIST report], the results of which were invalidated by the country's Supreme Court [JURIST report] following fraud allegations. Yushchenko was sworn in as Ukraine's president [JURIST report] in January 2005 on the wings of the populist Orange Revolution [BBC timeline] after winning a re-vote. Yushchenko reluctantly accepted Yanukovych as prime minister last June and the two have since clashed over parliamentary attempts to expand the cabinet's power [JURIST reports] at the expense of the presidency.